Capacity building training programme for public health officials in maternal and child health in Ethiopia, Kenya and Malawi

An online part-time training programme from September 2021 – May 2022 for governmental, academic and clinical professionals in Ethiopia, Kenya and Malawi.

Photo: Helena Lindgren

The purpose

The purpose of the programme is to build capacity within the public health sector in the field of reproductive, maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health and nutrition. The programme is being carried out with financial support from the Swedish Institute.

This initiative offers a creative and innovative approach to build professional competences and confidence for leaders in the field of reproductive, maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health and nutrition in East African countries.


Some of the topics that will be addressed:

  • What is sustainable health and what are the ways of getting there? Globally, regionally and nationally – in collaboration.
  • How can quality of care be sustained and further improved during and after the covid-19 pandemic?
  • How to encourage interdisciplinary multi-professional teamwork and what makes a team a team?
  • How to systematically close the gap between what we know and what we do? How to utilize proven health interventions and evidence-based practices by choosing the right implementation strategies.

The capacity building training programme connects and spans across six sustainable development goals (SDG 2, 3, 5, 10 and 16). We will work together within and between professions with specific areas for improvement. A team of experienced lecturers and researchers within implementation, leadership and health economy in relation to reproductive, maternal, newborn, child and adolescents’ health and nutrition are engaged in the programme.


Sep 2021 – May 2022.


This programme will educate officials, primarily with a background in nursing and midwifery, in government institutions such as health and education ministries, public health authorities and public or private hospitals and universities with medical and nursing education in Ethiopia, Kenya and Malawi during 2021/22. There will be a mixture of participants from governmental institutions, academia and clinical care. In total 24 participants will be enrolled in the programme.

Meet some of the participants in the ongoing programme:

Thanks Karolinska Institutet for coming up with the program! It has changed my way of thinking and improved my work performance.

Hellen Mutsi, course participant

Helena Lindgren, Associate professor, Karolinska Institutet

How is the programme delivered?

The programme is led by Helena Lindgren, Associate professor, Karolinska Institutet, Department of Women's and Children's Health in collaboration with Miriam Wagoro, Senior lecturer and Director School of Nursing, University of Nairobi, Eveles Chimala, Senior Lecturer, Kamuzu College of Nursing and Midwifery, University of Malawi and Solomon Hailemeskel, lecturer and PhD student, University of Gondar, Ethiopia. The programme is part of the Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Health.

The programme will be delivered on approx. 20 % speed requiring all participants to actively contribute and use around 6-10 h/week.

The programme will mainly run online, both through prerecorded webinars and videos as well as online interactive real-time workshops and group work. If the situation allows physical meetings and study visits in each respective country will be facilitated.

Content of the programme:

  • Introductory webinar.
  • Training package for all participants focusing on the targeted SDG:s.
  • Implementing strategies for quality improvements in health care settings.
  • Leadership and management within healthcare systems in low- and middle-income settings.
  • Project:  All participants will work with relevant projects, both individually and in teams, addressing concrete challenges identified and defined during the programme.

Mentoring will be offered by subject-specific supervisors.


The course is free of charge as the program is being carried out with financial support from the Swedish Institute.

Entry requirements

You apply by submitting your CV and motivation letter describing how you are relevant to the target group, your background and motivation for applying.

Selection is based on the following criteria

  • Target group and strategic fit
  • Management level position and responsibility
  • Relevance of your role and support from your employee organisation
  • Background and motivation for applying, and utilizing the experience and network after the programme
  • The programme will seek to select a diverse group of participants with regards to gender, age, background (professional and personal), country and roles/responsibility


To apply, carefully follow the following steps. Please note that incomplete applications will not be considered. 

  1. Register your interest here. 
  2. Prepare the following supporting documents:
  • CV (Must be in English). Should contain the following information: Name and contact information / Relevant experience (payed or voluntary) incl. position, when and what; key responsibilities and skills / Education and qualifications / References (preferably to your current employer)
  • Letter of Motivation (Must be in English, max 450 words), describing your motivation to join this program and how you expect to use the knowledge and network from the programme in your organization, your role or your country.  
  • Copy of national identification (national identify card or passport)
  1. Name and save the supporting documents according to the following format: "firstname_lastname_CV", "firstname_lastname_LOM" and "firstname_lastname_ID". An example: "john_smith_CV".
  2. E-mail the supporting documents to with the subject line: "Capacity building training programme". 

Last day to apply is 31 May 2021.

Funded by the Swedish Institute

This programme is funded by the Swedish Institute and part of the SI Public Sector Innovation Programme, in which universities and colleges provide training programmes for public sector employees and elected representatives from more than twenty countries. The purpose is to strengthen the capacity of professionals to contribute to innovation in the public sector and support the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for sustainable development.

For more information, please contact:

Susanna Sjunneryd

Project coordinator