South Sudan

Juba College of Nursing & Midwifery Program Update

December 27, 2013

Dr. Taban Martin Vitale and Okang Wilson Ezekiel

Project Background:

South Sudan’s maternal mortality remains the highest in the world, at 2,054 deaths per 100,000 live births; 200,000 women die in childbirth every year according to the 2006 South Sudan Health Survey. High levels of maternal mortality are linked to: poor access to quality reproductive health services, including family planning, access to skilled birth attendants and access to emergency obstetric and neonatal care. Fewer than 20 certified nurses and even fewer registered midwives, 4 in total, exist in all of South Sudan, a population of 9.6 million.

The first graduation class of midwives and nurses from JCONAM and representatives of the Ministry of Health,school staff, Mr. Robbert Boelkens, WCF representative (center left), and RMF CEO, Dr. Martina Fuchs.

Real Medicine Foundation, in collaboration with the Government of South Sudan, UNFPA, UNICEF, UNDP, WHO, St. Mary’s Hospital Juba Link, Isle of Wight, and the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA), and in partnership with and with financial support from World Children’s Fund, has established South Sudan’s first ever accredited College of Nursing and Midwifery (JCONAM). The consortium aims to provide a scalable working model for this college that offers a 3 year diploma for Registered Nursing and Midwifery and is envisioned to be extended to other strategic locations within the newly independent country of South Sudan. This graduated level of nurses and midwives aims at filling the gap of professional skilled care services, destroyed as a result of the more than two decades of civil strife and war.

Project Objectives:

  1. Provide model courses in Registered Nursing and Registered Midwifery in the first National Health Training Diploma Institute in South Sudan
  2. Provide a curriculum recognized by all ministries associated with education in the ROSS (new designation for the new Republic of South Sudan, replacing GOSS)
  3. Provide leading edge skills laboratory and library for the students
  4. Provide improved clinical setting for student training
  5. Provide highly qualified instructors and tutors for the duration of the three year program
  6. Provide an unprecedented model of health care sector capacity building for South Sudan
  7. Provide a sustainable solution to South Sudan’s Maternal and Infant Mortality Rate, the former, which is the highest in the world at 2,054/100,000 as per the 2006 South Sudan Household Survey.  Approximately 200,000 women die each year giving birth.


Second year Nursing Students with their new RMF t-shirts

Summary of RMF/WCF-sponsored activities carried out during the reporting period undereach project objective:

  • Implemented activities in line with RMF sponsored activities and project objectives include:
  • Support to the National Ministry of Health, Republic of South Sudan and project partners in the coordination and implementation of project activities over the reporting period. Also in line with the approved College annual work plan.
  • Facilitated the travel of Real Medicine Foundation’s (RMF) Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Martina Fuchs, from headquarters to attend and represent RMF during the graduation ceremony of the first batch of JCONAM students in Juba, which took place on 29th of August 2013.
  • Facilitated the visit of World Children’s Fund (WCF) representatives Robbert Boelkens and Angela Geddes to attend and represent WCF during the graduation ceremony of the first batch of JCONAM students in Juba on 29th of August 2013, as well as their visit of JCONAM and Juba Teaching Hospital (JTH).
  • Supported the graduation of the first cohort of JCONAM students through provision of entertainment materials for the students.
  • Coordinated with International Rescue Committee (IRC) the Training-of-Trainers (ToT) training for the 30 third-year JCONAM students on Clinical Care of Sexual Assault Survivors (CCSAS).
  • Continued facilitation of inter-linkages with UNFPA, MOH, IMC and other stakeholders in ensuring quality assurance in the implementation of both nursing and midwifery curricula in the diploma program.
  • Coordination of RMF activities with other organizations and UN agencies supporting the Juba College of Nursing and Midwifery by participating in meetings and conferences.
  • Sponsorship of first, second and third year nursing and midwifery students at the Juba College of Nursing and Midwifery through provision of uniforms, skills laboratory equipment, clinical training equipment, books, stationery and Information Technology (IT) equipment.
  • Continued support of high speed WIFI internet services for JCONAM.



JCONAM third year students during 5 days ToT training on Clinical Care of Sexual Assault Survivors (CCSAS) conducted by International Rescue Committee (IRC) in collaboration with RMF.


Results and/or accomplishments achieved during this reporting period:

  • The first group of JCONAM students, comprised of 17 midwives and 13 nurses, graduated on August 29, 2013 and this group of healthcare professionals have been eagerly awaited and are most welcome in joining the nursing and midwifery workforce in the Republic of South Sudan.
  • RMF was well acknowledged during the graduation ceremony by the Minister of Health, Honorable Dr. Riek Gai Kok, Undersecretary, Dr. Makur Matur Kariom, other MOH officials and UN agencies/NGOs for the initiation and management of the College.
  • Dr. Martina Fuchs, Chief Executive Officer, RMF, delivered a terrific speech during the graduation ceremony.
  • WCF’s Robbert Boelkens and Angela Geddes were warmly received and acknowledged by all stakeholders at the graduation ceremony.
  • Supported the College dancer group with entertainment materials during the first graduation ceremony of the JCONAM students.
  • Procured and delivered four new laptops for the College which will help the tutors to carry out their daily program activities.

  • Procured and stocked the College dispensary with essential medicines; the students and the College staff now receive medication from the College for simple medical conditions.

  • The new graduates were trained on Clinical Care of Sexual Assault Survivors (CCSAS) and are now master trainers, enabling them to train others and address issues related to sexual abuse and gender-based violence.
  • All of the tutors and the nursing/ midwifery students are able to access internet services at the College without interruption, providing them improved access to online learning materials and communications.
  • Coordination of RMF activities and participation in meetings/workshops together with NGOs and UN agencies supporting JCONAM and other National Health Training Institutes (NHTIs)
  • Shared the profiles of the new graduates with partners engaged in healthcare projects, the majority of which have been employed by NGOs/government agencies implementing healthcare services in different parts of South Sudan.

Number served/number of direct project beneficiaries:

1. Through the support of the consortium of partners, currently 103 students are fully sponsored for the three-year education program. This includes the provision of school uniforms, books, stationery, tutors and monthly allowances. The third year class graduated in August 2013, and we will soon undertake the recruitment of year one students who will start in January 2014.



No. Nursing Students

No. Midwifery Students


Year 1




Year 2




Year 3









2. The project provides employment opportunities for both the teaching and non-teaching staff. This provides economic sustainability for the staff and their families.

3. JCONAM was established in 2010 by the consortium of partners on behalf of the Ministry of Health, Republic of South Sudan. To date, project activities have been implemented with a planned exit strategy, working toward turning over complete implementation of these projects by the Ministry of Health. This is to ensure each project’s sustainable development and continuity by the relevant office in the Ministry of Health.

4. Upon graduation after the three-year course, the registered nurses and midwives will provide a much-needed service within the states and counties at facilities level. The services offered by this cadre of graduates are also expected to extend into the community through health education, community mobilization and home care, among others.

5. With the inclusion of the second year midwifery students into the maternity ward delivery roster, the students are able to conduct/participate in 10-20 supervised deliveries per day. These numbers are however meant to increase as the College looks into expanding the number of practice sites in the near future.

Success Stories

The Juba College of Nursing and Midwifery (JCONAM) was established in 2010 with RMF as its initiator and co-founder. This is the first ever accredited College in the Republic of South Sudan producing high-level diploma nurses and midwives.

The first cohort of students consisting of 17 midwives and 13 nurses graduated on August 29, 2013. During the graduation ceremony, the Honourable Minister of Health, the Undersecretary, Director Generals and other directors from the Ministry of Health, NGOs and United Nations agencies all congratulated RMF for championing the initiation and management of JCONAM, especially during the difficult moment at the point of initiation and for working in close collaboration with the MOH and partners, which led to the success of the College.






The College has now trained 30 high-level healthcare professionals who will add to the nursing and midwifery workforce in the newly formed Republic of South Sudan.

Country Page: South Sudan Initiative Page: Juba College of Nursing and Midwifery