Community Health Volunteers’ Knowledge and Skills
INDICATOR PHRASING: number of Community Health Volunteers who passed both theoretical and practical tests
What is its purpose?
The indicator assesses the proportion of Community Health Volunteers (CHV) that have the knowledge and skills required for the effective performance of their health extension responsibilities.
How to Collect and Analyse the Required Data
It is recommended that the CHVs’ knowledge is assessed by a theoretical test and their skills by a practical test:
The theoretical test needs to focus on assessing the CHVs’ knowledge of:
1) The main messages the CHV is expected to communicate to the target audience
2) The main principles of effective communication technique/ information transfer
3) The content of the behaviour change materials the CHV is supposed to use
Set clear criteria for passing the test (for example, when at least 75% of the answers are correct).
The practical test needs to be based on an observation of the CHVs’ practical skills. Use a simple checklist that can help you evaluate whether the CHVs follow the desired practices (see an example on pages 130 – 131 of the Make Me a Change Agent publication below). Make sure that the checklist is realistic and assesses only those practices that the CHVs were previously trained in (and ideally also coached or otherwise supported).
Set clear criteria for passing the test (for example, when the promoter follows at least 7 out of 10 observed practices).
To calculate the indicator's value, divide the number of CHVs that passed both theoretical and practical tests by the total number of tested CHVs. Multiply the result by 100 to convert it to a percentage.
1) Keep in mind that observation-based tests usually cannot be done at the time of the project's endline (when all activities are over) and the data for the indicator therefore needs to be collected in the course of the CHVs’ promotion activities.
2) Observation-based practical tests are relatively time consuming – ensure that you have a sufficient number of data collectors / observers (at the same time, they are 100% worth the effort as they tell you much more than an ordinary written test does; furthermore, their results can be used to address the gaps in CHV skills).