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Tools for Better SBC in FP/RH Programming

Over the last four years, Breakthrough ACTION has produced dozens of tools on social and behavior change (SBC) for family planning and reproductive health (FP/RH). However, figuring out which tools best suit which audiences can be a challenge. In response, and in order to ensure that these tools (which are often a result of co-creation) are actually used, Breakthrough ACTION, in collaboration with Springboard and the Ouagadougou Partnership Coordination Unit, hosted a virtual share fair and workshop in English and French.

The event featured six tools that address key programmatic challenges identified by Springboard members:

  1. Helping SBC practitioners continue implementing quality interventions during COVID
  2. Convincing stakeholders of the effectiveness of SBC and advocating for investment in SBC
  3. Encouraging male engagement in FP programs and addressing key barriers and drivers of their engagement
  4. Meeting adolescent and youth sexual and reproductive health needs and improving youth-related contraceptive access and outcomes

This virtual workshop was held over two half days:

  • Day 1: Participants learned about three tools of their choosing in an interactive knowledge café with the tool developers.
  • Day 2: Participants selected one tool from the knowledge café session to learn about more thoroughly. They participated in a facilitated discussion to better understand how to adapt and use their chosen tool to address their specific contextual and programming needs and created a mini-action plan for putting it to use.

The spotlighted tools included:

Theme Tool
Helping SBC practitioners continue implementing quality interventions during COVID Guidance on Social and Behavior Change for Family Planning During COVID-19
Convincing stakeholders of the effectiveness of SBC programming and advocating for investment in SBC Advocating for Social and Behavior Change in Family Planning Programs: A Message Framework
Encouraging male engagement in FP programs and addressing key barriers and drivers of their engagement Advancing Male Engagement in Family Planning + Reproductive Health: An Advocacy Tool
Know, Care, Do: A Theory of Change for Engaging Men and Boys in Family Planning
Meeting the FP/RH needs of youth and improving youth-related FP access and outcomes Empathways (digital and print versions)
Applying Segmentation to SBC in Family Planning

SBC professionals with various degrees of experience attended the event and shared their experiences. One hundred fifteen participants from Ethiopia, Ghana, India, Kenya, Mozambique, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Philippines, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, Yemen, and Zambia attended the English-speaking workshop, while the French-speaking workshop reached over 185 participants from Algeria, Benin, Burkina Faso, Congo-Brazzaville, Côte d’Ivoire, DRC, Guinea, Madagascar, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Senegal, and Togo.

Participant feedback on the virtual workshop

“The breakout room sessions promoted active participation.” – India

“I loved the format of the workshop, especially the action planning activity.” – Ghana

“The blend of presentation introductions and self-study deep dive was interesting.” – Nigeria

“The exchanges and experience of other colleagues in relation to the difficulties in the community was beneficial.”- Guinea

A screenshot from a computer screen of a Zoom meeting where BA hosted Day 1 of the French Share Fair on August 3, 2022.
Screenshot from Day 1 of the French Share Fair, which took place on August 3, 2022.

In the post-workshop survey, participants noted that they appreciated the opportunity to build their skills using various SBC tools, which prompted them to solve challenges in their own programming:

“From the workshop, I got new skills for how SBCC approaches can be used to address key issues in a manner that people can understand. Shared experience from different participants also strengthened my capacity.”


“With prior knowledge from Breakthrough on Provider Behavior tools, this workshop was eye-opening, as it allowed me to understand how to engage with other stakeholders on SBC programming.”


Many participants told us that they plan to use the various tools across the project life cycle, from design to implementation and evaluation. As a first step, a participant from Mozambique noted their plans to “share the information with colleagues and discuss how we can apply the shared knowledge.” Another participant from Uganda noted that they will use the principles of male engagement in their work preventing HIV.

“We will first do advocacy with the donor, then exchange with the specific national program of adolescents and youth to see if there are possibilities of adaptation, especially of the Empathways model, … and exchange with your representation in Kinshasa, then move onto the implementation through the training of actors on its use and monitoring.”


Breakthrough ACTION will continue to support participants via Springboard as they share their completed action plans and apply these tools to their programming. In the future, we will explore ways to engage participants more fully in the design of the share fair so we also learn more about their experiences with SBC for FP/RH best practices and tools. From this workshop, we hope participants continue to explore and use Breakthrough ACTION’s tools to build capacity among their networks and solve various SBC for FP/RH challenges.

Several youth advocates in Ethiopia meet around a conference table to discuss their work related to adolescent and youth sexual and reproductive health.. Photo credit: Maheder Haileselassie Tadese/Getty Images/Images of Empowerment
Lisa Mwaikambo

Knowledge Management Team Lead, Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs

Lisa Mwaikambo (née Basalla) has worked for the Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs since 2007. During that time, she has served as the IBP Knowledge Gateway global administrator, program officer on an HIV prevention strategic behavior change communications project in Malawi, and manager of the USAID Global Health eLearning (GHeL) Center. As the Director of KM Integration, she led the K4Health Zika portfolio and now serves as the KM Lead for The Challenge Initiative (TCI), leading the dynamic TCI University platform, and also supports Breakthrough ACTION. Her experience spans knowledge management (KM), instructional design, capacity building/training and facilitation – both online and in-person, program design, implementation, and management, and research and evaluation. Lisa has extensive experience in family planning, gender, and HIV programming. She is a certified Knowledge Manager and has a Master of Public Health from Case Western Reserve University and a BA from the College of Wooster.

Sarah Kennedy

Family Planning Program Officer, Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs

Sarah Kennedy is a Family Planning Program Officer at the Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs (CCP), providing core programmatic and knowledge management support across various projects. Sarah has experience in global health project management and administration, research, communications, and knowledge management and is passionate about making the world a more just and humane place and learning from others. Sarah holds a BA in Global Studies from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and an MPH with a certificate in Humanitarian Health from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

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