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The latest in global sexual and reproductive health news

Groups push Obama to clarify U.S. abortion funding for wartime rape

Nearly two dozen health, advocacy and faith groups are calling on President Barack Obama to take executive action clarifying that U.S. assistance can be used to fund abortion services for women and girls raped in the context of war and conflict.
Type: Pathfinder in the News
Focus Area: Advocacy

Five digital payment innovations with the potential to transform development

Visa and NetHope grant recipients illustrate the power of digital payments.

With Pathfinder International’s mHMtaani project (Swahili for “mobile health for my community”), community health workers in Kenya’s coastal region use a mobile phone application to register clients, provide health services and upload data to the cloud so program managers can monitor and analyze patient care and outcomes. 

Death-dealing double standard of US policies toward women overseas

Ipas's Liz Maguire and Pathfinder's President + CEO Purnima Mane stand up for women's health overseas in an op-ed against the Helms Amendment.

For over 40 years, the Helms Amendment has been applied as a complete ban on abortion care in U.S.-funded global health programs -- with no exceptions.

Type: Pathfinder in the News
Focus Area: Abortion

Pathfinder co-sponsors Politico ad on Helms Amendment

Pathfinder joins several peer organizations in the call to President Obama to provide access to abortion in cases of rape, incest, and life endangerment.

Burundi: Using contraceptives to battle population growth

Burundi is showing great progress in achieving the ambitious worldwide goal of FP2020: 120 million more women and girls with access to contraceptives and information about family planning.

Since Pathfinder started working in Burundi in 2007, the contraceptive prevalence rate rose in Kayanza from 7% to nearly 30% in 2013 while in Muyinga province it went from 12% in 2007 to 35% in 2013.

Le Niger a fait d’importants progrès en matière de planification familiale, selon un Rapport de Family Planning 2020

Niger cites progress in family planning according to recent Family Planning 2020 report.

Il y a deux ans, note le Rapport, que notre pays a joint sa voix à celle de la Communauté internationale   pour la réalisation de l’objectif ambitieux, ‘’ que d’ici 2020, 120 millions de plus de femmes et de filles aient accès aux contraceptifs et aux informations sur la planification familiale."

Family planning drive reaches millions of women and girls

The Family Planning 2020 (FP2020) report, the group’s first set of annual data since its formation two years ago, warns population growth could outpace family planning programmes in some countries despite range of contraception initiatives.

In Kenya, health clinics are using text messages to combat empty shelves. As part of one project, nurses send inventory reports via text to a central data management centre and the contraceptives are sent out immediately. Other innovations included the mCenas! project in Mozambique, which educates young people about contraception via text, and a television and online series in India that highlights family planning through drama programmes.

What’s Youth Got to Do With It? Investing in Youth Sexual and Reproductive Health a Development Bargain

Rita Badiani, Mozambique Country Representative for Pathfinder, speaks at the Wilson Center's Sept. 24 event on youth sexual and reproductive health.

Rita Badiani, Mozambique country representative for Pathfinder International, pointed out that in Pathfinder’s Geração Biz program, government data made it difficult to target the youth they wanted to reach. “The health information system actually made adolescents and youth invisible due to the lack of disaggregation for this age group in the system,” she said.

43 percent of pregnancies unintended in Sindh, seminar told

Pathfinder's Tauseef Ahmed, Country Representative in Pakistan, discusses the difficulties the country faces due to its high population.

“You can earn demographic dividend only if you invest in health (that included reproductive health and family planning), education, employment opportunities and good governance,” Dr Tauseef Ahmed of Pathfinder said, adding that governance based on merit-based decisions and accountability was the backbone of the process.

Pathfinder supports WHO's statement on prevention and elimination of disrespect and abuse during childbirth

Pathfinder joins more than 25 organizations in showing support for the World Health Organization's statement on prevention and elimination of disrespect and abuse during childbirth.

Every woman has the right to the highest attainable standard of health, including the right to dignified, respectful care during pregnancy and childbirth. However, across the world many women experience disrespectful, abusive, or neglectful treatment during childbirth in facilities. These practices can violate women’s rights, deter women from seeking and using maternal health care services and can have implications for their health and well-being.

Photo Journal: There’s an app for that

Kenya’s mobile incentive program improves the health of mothers and children, while offering secure and reliable payment to frontline health workers.

Supported by the US Agency for International Development through Pathfinder International’s APHIAplus Nairobi-Coast program, the mHMtaani project (Swahili for “mobile health for my community”) enables community health workers like Elizabeth to register clients, provide health services, and record data directly via a mobile phone.

U.N. Urged to Reaffirm Reproductive Rights in Post-2015 Agenda

Purnima Mane, president and chief executive officer of Pathfinder International, told IPS, “We are delighted the final set of [proposed] SDGs contains four critical targets on SRHR: three under the health goal and one under the gender goal. But we have not reached the finish line yet. We must all continue to raise our voices to ensure these SRHR targets are intact when the final version is approved."

Underage: Addressing Reproductive Health and HIV Needs in Married Adolescent Girls

“Globally, this marginalized population of young women has unique needs and rights that need to be addressed and acknowledged,” said Callie Simon, a technical advisor for adolescent sexual and reproductive health with Pathfinder International. “Married adolescent girls have so little power and decision-making over their bodies, over their choices, [and] over their lives."

Protecting People and the Environment in Lake Victoria Basin

A video provides a snapshot of Pathfinder International’s Health of People and Environment in Lake Victoria Basin project, an integrated population, health, and environment project supported by MacArthur. The project aims to reduce threats to biodiversity conservation and ecosystem degradation in the Lake Victoria Basin while increasing access to family planning and sexual and reproductive health services.

Saving pregnant mother: red flag approach

Pathfinder's Surjer Hashi Clinic (Smiling Sun) has unified Bangladesh's Teknaf community towards one goal: save pregnant mother. Among the many innovations introduced by clinic, one has been the demarcation of houses occupied by pregnant mothers with red flags - enabling neighbors to come together and help that particular family when required.

"As Mariam Bibi, near 30 with two children said in her own words, 'When I was pregnant the second time, my husband, a small trader was unable to take proper care for me. Moreover, our house is so far from upazila health complex, regular check-ups were not possible. In the mean time Surjer Hashi Clinic came forward to help me prevent health problems associated with pregnancy. They hung a red flag atop my house so that everybody could see and understand the need to help pregnant mothers like me.'"

Pakistan: Where Mothers Are Also Children

Dr. Tauseef Ahmed, Pakistan country director of Pathfinder International, a non-profit organisation working to improve adolescent and youth access to sexual and reproductive health services in more than 30 countries, says that early pregnancy is not uncommon among teenage brides. In fact, having a baby is a way of proving one’s fertility, and the values of adolescent pregnancy are “protected by women and girls themselves,” he told IPS.

Experts stress need to invest in youth on ‘World Population Day’

Demographic expert Dr Tauseef Ahmed, while speaking at a workshop organised by non-government organisations Subh-e-Nau and Pathfinders, said that if we fail to invest in the youth, not only they will be unskilled and uneducated but they will stay unemployed.

World Population Day: Call for concrete measures to curb growth

Pathfinder International head Dr Tauseef Ahmed said that most of the youth was now being dubbed “uneducated, unskilled, and devoid of aspirations”. He said growing population is a cross-cutting issue all over the world, he said.

Reproductive Rights Take Centre Stage at U.N. Special Session

As the UN continues negotiations on a new set of Sustainable Development Goals for its post-2015 development agenda, population experts are hoping reproductive health will be given significant recognition in the final line-up of the goals later this year.

“I would hope the upcoming U.N. session will highlight the need to include sexual and reproductive health and rights upfront as a core component of the Sustainable Development Goals as the Open Working Group continues to develop its proposal,” said Purnima Mane, President & CEO of Pathfinder International.

New Video from CSIS Examines Impact of Family Planning in Ethiopia

See Ethiopians—rural women, an Orthodox Priest, the First Lady of Ethiopia, and more—share why they believe family planning is key to their country’s development.

“Women build the society. They build a nation. And investing in family planning is investing in the future.”-Dr. Tewodros Bekele, Director of Maternal, Child Health & Nutrition Programs, Ethiopian Federal Ministry of Health

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