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Julius Chingwalu

Julius Chingwalu - 2019 Nominee
Position: Technical Advisor, Family Planning
Organization: Health Policy Plus
Current Location: Malawi
Master of Philosophy in Demography from University of Cape Town
Additional Degrees and Certifications:
Bachelor of Science, University of Malawi
75 Public Votes Reached!
Led a team of modelers do the Malawi RAPID application results of which were critical in informing the direction of government’s growth & development strategy and population pillar. His work has stimulated 20% of local funding for FP in 1 district. – Barwani Msiska, Project Manager at University of Malawi, Social Innovation in Health Initiative
Describe your contributions to and achievements in family planning.

The third Malawi Growth and Development Strategy (MGDS III) recognizes the role that population plays in Malawi's development agenda. The conceptualization of this and drafting of the strategy involved generating evidence which showed that rapid population growth provides a bigger challenge to Malawi's development and that investing in family planning would help Malawi save and invest in various sectors of the economy. Using Avenir Health's SPECTRUM suit of models, I led a team that applied the Resources for the Awareness of Population Impacts on Development (RAPID) model to generate the needed evidence. After presenting the evidence to the relevant authorities, it was decided that would be made to be one of the key pillars of MGDS III.

What sparked your passion for family planning?

During my undergraduate at the University of Malawi, Chancellor College, I joined CHANCO Health Network, a student based association that advocated for healthy living among communities surrounding the college in Zomba. Working in these communities, I met many young people who faced a variety of SRHR problems. Key among these problems at the time were HIV/AIDS and also early and unwanted pregnancies. At the time, use of contraception including condoms for dual protection was very low in Malawi.

Give one or two examples of how you display leadership in your family planning work.:

I have been supporting four districts in Malawi to prioritize family planning in the district implementation plans. Most of the districts rely on donor funds for their family planning interventions. My work with the four districts has seen an increase in appreciation of family planning and allocation of resources for family planning interventions. For example, in the 2018/19 financial year, 20% of funds for family planning interventions in Machinga district come from the districts own resources.

If you are named a winner of 120 under 40, how will you use this new platform and the $1000 grant to advance your work? :

I intend to use this platform to advance male involvement by working with religious leaders to promoting family planning among their congregants. In a country where male involvement in family planning is low and religious beliefs shape beliefs and values, I think it is important that I draw on my experience working with religious leaders to advance family planning. Using boys and men groupings, messages on family planning can be shared to change social norms around the subject.

Photos of the nominee in the field/at work
Health Budget Advocacy Workshop for CSO's in Lilongwe, January 2019

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