The County Innovation Challenge Fund (CICF) operates as part of the UK Department for International Development’s (DFID’s) “Reducing Maternal and Neonatal Death in Kenya (2013-2018)” programme; a five-year programme implemented by UNICEF, Marie Stopes International / Options Consultancy Services Limited (Options), the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (LSTM), and other partners.

The Programme supports a range of interventions to improve maternal and neonatal health (MNH) including training of health workers, health systems strengthening, community mobilisation, and demand generation. It is implemented across six counties with different socio-demographic contexts: peri-urban informal settlements in Nairobi; nomadic pastoralist communities in Garissa and Turkana; and rural agrarian populations in Kakamega, Bungoma and Homa Bay.

In its delivery, the CICF invites innovations that can deliver impact and increase access to and/or utilisation of quality MNH services within the unique socio-demographic contexts of the six focus counties by:

socio-demographic contexts

  • CICF innovations must demonstrate readiness for rapid implementation, be able to deliver results within twenty-one months, and increase access to and/or utilisation of maternal and newborn health services.
  • Innovations that target adolescent girls and youth are strongly encouraged.
  • Innovations should augment existing MNH interventions in the focus counties.

Target Populations

Target Populations

The Fund is guided by five main principles, seeking projects that are local, motivated and innovative to get impact.

  • Impact:Increase access to and utilisation of quality MNH services; strengthen health systems

  • Innovation:Radical scalable and sustainable solutions that will turn around supply-side and demand-side limitations to quality MNH services. Upsetting the market such that others will copy and replicate.

  • Local solutions:Respond to local challenges

  • Building partnerships:Build capacity of local organisations to address existing constraints through recognising the value of local knowledge, experience and expertise in developing sustainable solutions

  • Problem focused:Use a problem-focused approach to round three to achieve a balanced portfolio across the six counties, requesting proposals that respond to a defined set of issues in maternal and newborn health across the six counties

Principles chart

The socio-demographic descriptions below are intended to support CICF funding applicants to situate their proposals within the local context and priorities of each county.

Applicants are encouraged to review the existing CICF portfolio to avoid the submission of innovations that are already receiving CICF funding. Applicants are also encouraged to view county focus for details of the socio-demographic factors affecting each of the six target counties. These descriptions are not exhaustive. The CICF encourages applicants to identify additional unique challenges in the eligible counties/sub-counties and submit innovative local solutions.

Portifolio descriptions