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Reproductive health stories from Pathfinder and beyond

Taking Back Our Future

Harriet and her son

When Harriet was 15, two life-changing things happened. The rebel Lord’s Resistance Army finally left Uganda, allowing families like hers to return to what was left of their homes. That same year, she gave birth to her first child. Suddenly, she and her husband, Emmanuel, had to look to the future. But that seemed impossible.

“We Space Our Children Like We Space Our Trees. So They Grow Big and Strong."

At 15, Fausta gave birth to her first child. By 23, she had four. Like many girls on Uganda’s Bussi Island, Fausta felt pressure to marry young and grow her family fast.

What Do Fisheries Have to Do With Reproductive Health?

By midmorning, the sun heats the beaches of Jaguzi, a small island in Uganda. Fishermen find relief under the shade of a large tree. Behind them, Lake Victoria stretches for more than 200 miles.

Our Kids Need Us: One Family’s Struggle to Survive

By 25, Betty had four children. Her last delivery nearly killed her, when she lost too much blood. “I survived but never regained my health,” says Betty.

My Implant Is My Badge of Honor

Dorothy was married and pregnant by 18. By 22, she had five children. That’s what happens when you are a woman living with no choice about your body.

This is My Life. You Can’t Have It.

What if—in one instant—your dreams were stolen from you? Could you be as strong as Clara, a young woman from Uganda, and take them back?

No More Controversy: Same Sex Rights Are Human Rights

MSM Community Members

At the end of a year that has witnessed some real victories around the world for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) rights, we at Pathfinder were shocked to hear the news from Uganda today.

Country: India, Uganda
Focus Area: Advocacy

Lucy Shillingi Sheds Light on Solar Suitcase's Role in Pathfinder's Maternal Health Work

Solar Suitcase

The idea of a solar suitcase was born in Nigeria when American doctor Laura Stachel witnessed physicians performing an emergency cesarean section on a woman even after the lights went out. In countries like Nigeria, giving birth can be a risk to both the life of the mother and her child for a myriad of reasons. Giving birth is even riskier without dependable access to adequate lighting and the electricity that supports it.

Women Who Dare: Susan Akajo Oregede Challenges Gender Norms in Uganda

Susan Oregede

Susan Akajo Oregede has dedicated the past several years of her life to changing gender norms in Uganda, daring to challenge resistance, tradition, and even her community’s leaders to address issues like women’s equality, gender-based violence, and adolescent sexuality.

Family Planning Around a Campfire

Photo of men around a campfire in Uganda, discussing family planning

To reach the village of Kitugutu, you must be prepared. “The road is not good. You have to move out of your car and walk. It can be terrible, and on a motorcycle—deadly.” None of this stops Harriet Kengonzi, a registered midwife, from making the trip to provide essential family planning, maternal health, and HIV care.

Innovation by Solar Lamp Powers Family Planning Services, Poverty Reduction, and Clean Energy Use

Pathfinder International's Country Director in Uganda, Lucy Shillingi, shares her experience as a part of a dynamic project in rural Uganda where young women are empowering themselves and their communities providing family planning services by the light of solar lamps.

The Barriers I See in Bundibugyo

Photo by Esimundara Yeremia

These barriers have caused pregnant women in our community to suffer needlessly. I look forward to a day when these barriers are overcome and all women can access the reproductive health services they need and deserve.

The Energy in the Room was Electric

Excitement fills the room at Pathfinder's launch event for a new Lake Victoria Integrated Community-Managed Population, Health and Environment Project that is set to unfold in Uganda and Kenya.


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