The LEAPS programme is a nine-month capacity building programme for senior management of health governance agencies. The programme focuses on building the leadership acumen and execution capacity of administrators and policymakers of health governance institutions while at all time fostering inter-/cross-sectoral collaboration.
We have selected a crop of health leaders from Kaduna, Nassarawa and Niger to partake in this programme to further develop these critical governance skills. It is expected that they would use the knowledge, skills, and abilities acquired during this programme to harness the potential of their colleagues and teams, and drive forward improvements, innovations, and efficiency within their respective health systems.
The LEAPS programme has the following specific objectives:
1. To strengthen participants’ abilities to lead individuals and groups towards the attainment of strategically identified health system goals
2. To improve participants’ abilities to interpret and use data to drive implementation for results
3. To create an avenue for improved intra/inter-agency collaboration towards the attainment of set goals and targets
4. To develop capacity across systems by facilitating knowledge cascade from participants to implementation teams
5. To help participants chronicle their successes such that they are replicable in environments with similar constraints
The programme comprises delegates from three participating states: Kaduna, Nasarawa, and Niger. Each state is represented by two (2) teams of five (5) individuals each with team members representing the following MDAs: the State Ministry of Health, the State Primary Healthcare Development Agency, the State Drugs and Medical Supplies Management Agency, and the State Budget and Planning Commission.
As a precursor to the LEAPS programme, we had a programme ‘State Executives Leadership Programme (SELP)’ where we engaged the leadership of the healthcare MDAs in the three states to identify areas for immediate intervention. It was observed that upfront high-level stakeholder alignment was a critical success factor to the LEAPS state projects. In the past, the project team was made to select their own project and keep more senior stakeholders abreast for accountability. However, through the SELP programme, the role of prioritization and selection of a project was done by these high-level stakeholders themselves. We anticipate that this will solve challenges round ensuring high-level stakeholder buy-in and will guarantee to a large extent that resources are made available to execute the state projects. With improved buy-in, we also expect to see increased accountability from both the state teams and their leaders.