The aim of the project “Connecting the Dots: Teaching, Research and Services in the Great Lakes Region” was to complement the portfolio of the Swiss TPH office opened in Bukavu with a strong capacity building component in implementation research of young researchers through a joint inter-departmental collaboration at Swiss TPH (including the Sexual and Reproductive Health Unit at SCIH and the Society, Gender and Health Unit at EPH) and in close collaboration with the Université Catholique de Bukavu (UCB) in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The project offered implementation research training for young researchers over a period of 6 months, as well as data collectors within JeuneS3 to increase their knowledge and skills to carry out research of high quality. Swiss TPH lecturers were twinning with lecturers from the UCB.
More than 90 candidates applied to the course, while 25 participants were accepted to the course after a self-learning block and exam. The course included in-depth teaching related to all steps of implementation research the development of a proposal, ethical clearance, qualitative and quantitative data collection and analysis. The participants developed their own research project, collected the data and wrote a report. Further, participants developed a poster which was presented during the regional Practitioners Conference organized by Swiss TPH and partners.
The course was accredited by the Université Catholique de Bukavu and received very positive feedback by participants and lecturers involved.