July Milestone: CORE Group Polio Project

The CORE Group Polio Project (CGPP) is a multi-country, multi-partner initiative providing financial support and on-the-ground technical guidance to strengthen host country efforts to eradicate polio.

CGPP began in 1999 with USAID-funded grants to international and national NGOs to support polio eradication by mobilizing communities to participate in immunization campaigns, routine immunization, and Acute Flaccid Paralysis (AFP) surveillance.

The original idea for the project came from USAID’s Ellyn Ogden, and the inception of CORE Group around the same time played a direct role in CGPP’s development. Learn more in this video:


CORE Group’s proven Secretariat Model was first developed through CGPP.

Each CGPP country has their own secretariat – a small team of neutral technical advisors, independent from any one implementing partner.

The secretariat facilitates communication, coordination, and transparent decision-making among all partners – unifying the community-level expertise of international and local NGOs with the knowledge and strategies of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative partners.

Through this model, the countries effectively coordinate and promote civil society engagement in polio eradication, while simultaneously injecting a crucial community-level component through the coordinated activities of thousands of community health workers.

Learn more about the Secretariat Model:


When CGPP started in 1999, polio was endemic in dozens of countries with thousands of new cases arising annually.  Since then, CGPP has worked with over a dozen international NGOS and more than 50 local NGOs to effectively implement polio eradication activities in the hardest-to-reach areas of Angola, India, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Nepal, Nigeria, Uganda, South Sudan and Bangladesh.

Through the dedication and hard work of CGPP, the Global Polio Eradication Initiative, and thousands of volunteers, polio was reduced to three endemic countries and only 37 total cases in 2016.

With this incredible success and momentum, we may see the final case of wild polio virus in the world in 2017!


June Milestone: The TOPS Program

Since 2010, CORE Group has been a partner on The TOPS Program, a USAID/Food for Peace (FFP)-funded program that builds the capacity of FFP grantees and improves the quality of implementation through fostering collaboration, innovation, and knowledge sharing around food security and nutrition best practices.

CORE Group leads the knowledge management team at TOPS and runs the project’s open community of practice – The Food Security and Nutrition (FSN) Network.

Learn more about CORE Group’s role over the last seven years:

CORE Group’s Contributions to TOPS

Successes, Challenges, and the Way Forward: Seven Years of Community Building

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The TOPS Program is now in its seventh and final year, and is hosting its final Knowledge Sharing Meeting in July 2017. At this capstone event, the wider food security and nutrition community will reflect upon the knowledge gained and shared through TOPS while continuing to collaborate and share knowledge in order to improve development food assistance programming.

Learn more and register.

May Milestone: USAID’s Maternal and Child Health Projects

In its early years, CORE Group worked closely with USAID and the Child Survival Technical Support Project to provide technical support to NGO grantees of the Child Survival and Health Grants Program (CSHGP).

In 2008, USAID combined the Child Survival Technical Support Project and several other initiatives into the flagship Maternal and Child Health Integrated Program (MCHIP).

CORE Group was brought into MCHIP as a sub-grantee to continue support of the CSHGP grantees. Over time, CORE Group’s role in the project evolved as USAID and partners took note of the value of our growing International Community Health Network for learning and dissemination, and CORE Group’s community health expertise.

When MCHIP ended in 2014, CORE Group took on a full partner role in its successor – USAID’s Maternal and Child Survival Program (MCSP).

CORE Group is an active member of MCSP’s Community Health and Civil Society Engagement team, working closely with other partners to institutionalize community health as a central component of country health systems, and connect MCSP with the broader global health community through our Global Health Practitioner Conferences, Working Groups, webinars, resources, etc.

Learn more about CORE Group’s history with USAID’s maternal and child health projects:

Below are several of the resources that CORE Group has developed or contributed to through MCHIP and MCSP:

And here are some CORE Group-produced webinars sharing key MCHIP/MCSP takeaways:

CORE Group and its members bring a unique perspective on household and community-level issues, community mobilization and demand creation that is complementary to MCHIP’s more national and health-system oriented approach.

– MCHIP Midterm Evaluation

MCSP staff at the Institutionalizing Community Health Conference in Johannesburg in March 2017.


This website is dedicated to CORE Group’s past, present and future. Every month of 2017 we will feature a “milestone” from the last 20 years. Enjoy the history of collaboration and accomplishments, and look forward with us as we embark on the next phase of CORE Group’s strategy to improve and expand community health practices for underserved populations.