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Nepal: Pregnant Women’s Groups: An Integrated Approach to Reduce Maternal and Neonatal Deaths

Plan International is currently implementing a $1.5 million United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Development Innovation Ventures (DIV)-supported maternal health project called “Pregnant Women’s Groups: An Integrated Approach to Reduce Maternal and Neonatal Deaths in Nepal.” The project seeks to expand the implementation of the Pregnant Women’s Group (PWG) approach to 15 districts. The PWG approach brings together a group of 8-15 pregnant women and their relatives, who live in the same ward, to give them access to health information, improve their awareness and utilization of health services, and empower them and their family members to advocate with service providers – with the overall goal of contributing to the reduction in maternal and neonatal morbidity and mortality in Nepal. The PWGs meet monthly and the meetings are facilitated by trained female community health volunteers (FCHV), who are part of the Nepal health system. The FCHV educate the pregnant women on various health and Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) topics such as danger signs during pregnancy, delivery, and after delivery; birth preparedness; awareness about nutritional supplements, immunization, and hygiene; and utilization of health services (antenatal care, institutional delivery, and postnatal care). The PWG meetings also include a social map exercise that allows the group members to self-monitor service utilization. The positive peer pressure within the group serves as a driving force for behavior change for healthy practices.

USAID with Development Innovation Ventures Support
Project Start Date
August 2014
Project End Date
August 2017
Technical Areas Covered
Maternal and Child Health

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