Photo by Pathfinder International

In 1965, Pathfinder helped establish the Planned Parenthood Federation of Nigeria and provided the first grant in family planning to the Nigerian Ministry of Health for pilot work in northern communities.

Photo by Farouk Jega

Then in 1988, USAID selected Pathfinder to manage the public-sector component of what was then Africa’s largest family planning and reproductive health program.

Photo by Farouk Jega

Based in Nigeria, this watershed program developed resources—a national family planning management information system, unique training curricula, and standards of practice—for trainers, nongovernmental organizations, and health care providers.

Photo by Mark Tuschman

Today Pathfinder builds off of these experiences to aid the Nigerian government—to save mothers’ lives. Nigeria contributes to approximately 10% of worldwide maternal mortality, mostly due to uncontrolled postpartum hemorrhage and eclampsia.

Photo by Akintunde Akinyele

Pathfinder strengthens health systems and mobilizes communities, where approximately two out of three births occur at home. “We educate women on birth preparedness,” said Dr. Farouk Jega, Pathfinder’s Nigeria Country Representative.

Photo by Akintunde Akinyele

“That includes making sure they know the danger signs of pregnancy and have emergency plans in place, like determining who will donate blood or who has agreed to take them to the hospital.”

Photo by Mark Tuschman

It is all part of Pathfinder’s Continuum of Care. We work to ensure that a woman can access quality, life-saving health services at any point, from home to the hospital.

Pathfinder International’s work in Nigeria includes developing local capacity, delivering and managing high quality reproductive health programs, and addressing maternal and child health.

With a rapidly rising population of over 177 million, Nigeria remains in dire need of health systems reform and increased access to health care to meet the needs of its increasing population.

Despite considerable gains in the past decade, Nigeria's reproductive health indicators are still very poor. Much of Pathfinder's work today involves developing local institutional capacity to deliver and manage high-quality programs addressing reproductive health, family planning, maternal and child health, and HIV and AIDS.

Only 15 percent of married women (between 15-49 years of age) use contraception of any kind.

By developing institutional capacity, Pathfinder works to empower local communities in Nigeria to advocate for quality services. Well known throughout the country for its management of complex, multi-site projects, Pathfinder has strengthened the technical and training capacity of local partners and institutions to build sustainable, cost-effective, and culturally appropriate interventions.

Over the past three years, Pathfinder has built the organizational, institutional, and technical capacity of more than 50 local organizations that are implementing reproductive health, family planning, maternal and newborn care, and HIV and AIDS programs in Nigeria.

Pathfinder's institutional capacity building initiatives strengthen the ability of local partners (including NGOs, public and private sector organizations, and the Ministry of Health) to develop, plan, implement, and monitor quality interventions.


In Nigeria, contraceptive use is less than 10 percent. Your gift of $25 or $50 helps us ensure that people in Nigeria have better access to family planning as well as quality sexual and reproductive healthcare.

Our Projects

Building Blocks for FP2020 in Pakistan and Nigeria

Building Blocks for FP2020 in Pakistan and Nigeria

Contraception & Family Planning

Building Blocks for FP2020 is designed to support and advance family planning in Nigeria and Pakistan, two countries that have made ambitious goals for improving access to reproductive health care in the next decade.

Scaling up Clinical and Community Action to Address Maternal Health in Nigeria

Maternal & Newborn Health

Pathfinder builds on its successful CCA-PPH Plus model to address the two leading causes of maternal mortality: postpartum hemorrhage and pre-eclampsia/eclampsia.

Related Publications

August 2014

Research and Evaluation Working Paper Series

The purpose of the Working Paper Series is to disseminate work in progress by Pathfinder International staff on critical issues of population, reproductive health, and development.

August 2014

Assessment of the Quality of Antenatal Care Services Provided by Health Workers using a Mobile Phone Decision Support Application in Northern Nigeria

A pre/post intervention study assessing the effect of introducing a mobile case management and decision support application for antenatal care in northern Nigeria.

July 2014

m4Change + mCCT: Using Mobile Technology to Support Nigeria's SURE-P Conditional Cash Transfer Program for Maternal and Child Health

This fact sheet covers the use of mobile technology to support a conditional cash transfer program for maternal and child health in Nigeria.

June 2013

The Right to Safe Motherhood for Every Woman, Everywhere

In this edition of Pathways, we share stories from clients served by in our maternal health projects, with a focus on prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV and postpartum hemorrhage.

Related News

Pathfinder Staff Heavyhearted After Boarding School Tragedy in Nigeria

Yesterday, Pathfinder was outraged to learn that more than 50 male boarding school students lost their lives in a senseless attack in the Yobe state of Nigeria.

One Step to Saving a Million Lives

Pathfinder's m4Change project contributes to the government of Nigeria's goal to save one million lives in three years using a mobile phone application.

Pathfinder International embarked on a project designed to help Nigeria get to that goal. It began equipping community health extension workers with CommCare, a mobile phone app that collects information needed to determine the kind of antenatal health services provided to mothers.

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