Couple-Focused Interventions: A Theory of Change

thumbnail cover image of E2A's report "Couple-Focused Interventions: A Theory of Change." The cover features a photograph of a young couple from Burkina Faso standing together outside, in front of a tree, smiling into the camera. The Evidence to Action (E2A) Project, in its work to address the reproductive healthcare needs of girls, women, and underserved communities worldwide, has drawn global attention in recent years to an important subset of youth—first-time parents (FTPs)—defined as young women under the age of 25 years who are pregnant with or have one child, and their male partners. In implementing FTP programs in Nigeria, Tanzania, and Burkina Faso, a common theme emerged across contexts: FTPs expressed interest in improving their relationships by addressing key issues like communication and conflict management.

Couple-focused interventions are a potentially valuable strategy to address this concern of FTPs and accelerate progress toward achieving reproductive health goals. In this technical report, E2A builds on the findings of our recent literature review, “Couple-Based Approaches in Reproductive Health: Implications for Global Policy, Practice, and Research.”

This document provides an overview of E2A’s couple-focused theory of change and ideas for its practical application in the field through:

• A graphic depiction of the theory of change and a detailed explanation of its component parts
• An exploration of what program implementation at the TOC’s potential intervention points might look like, based on learnings from the literature review and E2A’s own findings
• A presentation of suggested monitoring and evaluation indicators for TOC components that CFI-focused programs can use to measure program impact


(RELATED RESOURCE) Read the Couple-Based Approaches Literature Review and Brief