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Jamii ni Afya

Zanzibar’s digitally enabled community health system delivers high-quality healthcare for all.

Everyone deserves access to high-quality healthcare no matter who they are or where they live, but more than half of the world’s population—over 4 billion people—lack essential health coverage.

In Zanzibar, too many people experience poor health and children die prematurely because of persistent barriers keeping them from getting the care they need, but digital technologies have an unprecedented potential to remove these barriers and improve access to and the quality of health services

Jamii ni Afya is transforming how people access care by connecting every household to community health volunteers in the world’s first government-led, digital community health program at full national scale.

By equipping community health workers with digital tools and positioning them inside a digitally enabled health system, we can help everyone get the healthcare they need, when they need it.

Download the Program Brief

What’s next for Jamii ni Afya?

In August 2021, we celebrated a significant milestone as Jamii ni Afya reached full national scale, being rolled out across all districts in Zanzibar. By ensuring all of its 1.9 million citizens have access to a digitally equipped community health volunteer at their doorstep, the Zanzibar Ministry of Health has brought the country closer to Universal Health Coverage than it has ever been before.

Long-term sustainability has been in our minds since the beginning of Jamii ni Afya and the Government has committed to full financial, programmatic and technology ownership of the program. The transition is currently the focus of the program, but we also have concrete plans to elevate the status of community health workers in the community, support them to provide comprehensive health services, and shift care delivery to people’s households, preventing emergencies before they arise and reducing the demand for curative services.

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Jamii ni Afya is

Supporting pregnant women to deliver in health facilities with skilled birth attendants can reduce a majority of preventable maternal deaths.
Effective referral systems help people get timely care when they need it and are estimated to save nearly two-thirds of preventable newborn deaths in Sub-Saharan Africa every year.
Connecting every household to community health volunteers in a comprehensive digital system improves equitable access to essential health services.

Health Outcomes

of pregnant women deliver in a health facility with skilled birth attendants
of pregnant women and children identified with danger signs who are referred to a health facility receive needed services
of Zanzibaris have access to a digitally equipped community health volunteer at their doorstep, ensuring everyone receives quality healthcare

The world’s first government-led,
digital community health program

Dr. Abdullah S. Ali
Director General, Zanzibar Ministry of Health
"We are extremely proud that the Jamii ni Afya program is now serving every community and ensuring that every Zanzibari can access high-quality healthcare. This represents an important milestone in our long-term partnership with D-tree, and a meaningful step toward achieving universal health coverage. With Jamii ni Afya, we are creating a foundation for transforming Zanzibar's primary health system. The Ministry is committed to leading Jamii ni Afya into the future and to continue increasing demand for health services, improving the quality of care provided, and actively involving communities in the health system."
Halima Khamis
Head of Health Promotion Unit, Zanzibar Ministry of Health
"Jamii ni Afya is changing how healthcare is accessed and delivered in Zanzibar. Every community is now connected to a dedicated community health volunteer (CHV) who is equipped with a mobile phone and formally supported as part of the public health sector. Clients can receive timely referrals to health facilities, CHVs receive supportive supervision and guidance, and health managers at the district level can access the information and data they need. Supervisors, Council Health Management Teams, and others can all make decisions faster and more accurately because we now have real-time data available. And, it works. We are already seeing how CHVs are helping increase demand for services, promoting essential health information, and improving key indicators for maternal and child health.”
Stefan Germann
CEO, Fondation Botnar
"Jamii ni Afya is ensuring that everyone has access to the high-quality essential healthcare they deserve by transforming how care is delivered. Fondation Botnar is pleased to support such a ground-breaking program that is demonstrating the power of digital health systems, when combined with proven community health programs, to provide 1.6 million people across Zanzibar with access to comprehensive essential health services, including for many young people."


​Community health volunteers are supporting families all across Zanzibar. Here are three stories of clients and families who have benefitted from the support of dedicated community health volunteers in Jamii ni Afya.

Amina’s Story
Zainabu’s Story
Aisha’s Story

Our Partners

​Jamii ni Afya’s design, implementation, and scale-up was made possible by the generous support of funders and partners around the world.

News & Stories from Jamii ni Afya

D-tree at the 77th World Health Assembly
Bridging the Gap: Achieving Health Equity in Postpartum Care...
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