BBC Mundo on 24 September published a slideshow about midwifery and UNFPA's work in South Sudan. Read in Spanish: BBC Mundo
BOLIVIA: El Cambio reported on 13 August on the situation of young people in the country and in the world. According to data from UNFPA, the worldwide youth population is now 1.8 billion, the highest figure in human history. Read in Spanish: Cambio
BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA: Multiple media outlets reported on 12 August on International Youth Day. UNFPA Assistant Representative Faris Hadrovic, invited representatives of the government to strengthen their work and dialogue with youth in Bosnia and Herzegovina. “Young people have rights and they should be included in decision-making processes that directly involve them. Cooperation between the government and youth is very important in order to respond more successfully to the challenges of creating a better future for all. Inter-generation cooperation is the key to achieving promises made in the Millennium Declaration and MDGs to create a more prosperous environment for youth in Bosnia and Herzegovina.” Read in Bosnian: Sarajevo-x.com and radiosarajevo.ba
BRAZIL: Folha de Sao Paulo published a special report on 14 August analyzing the implications of the world population of 7 billion, due to be reached by October. Despite the fact that the population has doubled in only 39 years, rising from 3 billion in 1960 to 6 billion in 1999, the pace of growth has decreased and tends to stabilize around 2100 according to UN projections. Education and family planning are among the factors that are leading to this scenario, according to demographers, while technological innovation has played a key role by ensuring food supply and better living conditions. However, global warming is a new threat to be taken into account. UNFPA’s 2009 State of the World Population Report was quoted, among other UN studies, stressing the need for improved access to education and modern contraceptive methods as one long-term strategy to curb global warming.
CONGO (BRAZZAVILLE): DRTV broadcast on 13 August the message of UNFPA Executive Director Babatunde Osotimehin, on the occasion of World Youth Day 2011, delivered in Congo by UNFPA Representative David Lawson. He stressed that youth constitute the largest portion of the population ever, and called on them to "Change our World," the theme of the international day.
Multiple media outlets reported on 13 August on a Youth Caucus jointly organized by the Youth Ministry, UNFPA and the National Youth Council for World Youth Day. A gathering of over 200 young people discussed how Congolese youth intends to "change its world" in Congo. In his opening remarks, UNFPA Representative David Lawson said, "Youth is the future of this planet and should reflect on how best contribute to making a safer more equitable and better world. Congo is in the middle of a societal transformation to which youth should contribute by seizing opportunities. It is your dreams that the world of tomorrow will be made of. UNFPA will support youth as one of its key priorities, including to enhance its ideas and institutional, organizational and advocacy capacity." Read in French: Congo-Site
LAO PDR: Xinhua reported on 12 August that UNFPA brought together 60 of the brightest young people from Laos' capital of Vientiane to celebrate International Youth Day (IYD). The theme "Youth Involvement: Opportunity for Development in Lao PDR," the event highlighted the contributions young people are making to society in order to promote their full and effective participation in the country's development. According to the UNFPA in Laos, the event included information sharing, group discussions and performances about youth-related issues. The young participants from the Lao government and international organizations, aged 16 to 24, came away from the event with practical plans for further action,
MEXICO: La Jornada, Milenio Diario, and Notimex reported on 12 August on celebrations of International Youth Day in Mexico and around the world. During a press conference on the occasion of International Youth Year closure, Mr. Ivan Castellanos, National Programme Associate on Population, Development and Youth of UNFPA pointed out that the current number of young-people between 15 and 24 years is the highest in history, and their present and future needs in education, sexual and reproductive health and access to employment, must be considered a priority. He also said that it is important to promote a decent job for young people, that they have access to social security and a contract. During the press conference UNFPA Mexico and Tendiendo Puentes launched the Fifth Photography Contest, “Mirada Joven” aimed to learn about the way young people think and feel about a world of seven billion people in the context of UNFPA’s campaign “Seven Billion Actions.” Read in Spanish: La Jornada (a), La Jornada (b) Milenio and Notimex
SOUTH SUDAN: Sudan Tribune reported on 12 August on an event marking World Youth Day, noting that UNFPA, one of the partners in the event, also reiterated its commitment to promote and protect the rights of adolescents and youth, whereby girls and boys have optimal opportunities to develop their full potential. “UNFPA promotes life-skills education and universal access to sexual and reproductive health services, and HIV prevention, treatment, care and support for young people. In addition, UNFPA acts to empower young women, including adolescent girls and to prevent all forms of gender-based violence,” partly reads a statement. Read: Sudan Tribune
URUGUAY: Sociedad Uruguaya published on 11 August the message from the UNFPA Executive Director, Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin for International Youth Day. Read more in Spanish: Sociedad Uruguaya
VENEZUELA: El Mundo Economía y Negocio published an op-ed on 11 August by UNFPA Assistant Representative Jorge González Caro on International Youth Day. The article focused on the current situation of youth in Venezuela, pointing out that the proportion of young people under age 15 are increasing as a proportion of the youth population. Mr. Gonzalez Caro emphasized the relationship between adolescent pregnancies, low education level for girls, poverty and gender-based violence. Finally, he called on leaders and decision makers to understand the significance of redirecting societal resources and investing in young people today, in order to advance the rights, health and well-being of current and future generations.
MediaGlobal reported on 12 August on efforts to address South Sudan’s high number of maternal deaths, noting that a recent UNFPA report found that more than 90 per cent of deliveries go unattended. The report cited the absolute lack of qualified health professionals, especially midwives, as an area of grave concern in developing countries. It also reported that Sudan would need to increase its current number of midwives by a factor of between six and 15 to save mother’s lives. Read: MediaGlobal
Gurtong reported on 29 July that with support of the Italian Cooperation UNFPA donated midwifery teaching materials worth $10,000 to the National Health Training Institute in Kajokeji town, south of Juba. Programme specialist of UNFPA South Sudan Kondwani Mwangulube said, “The organization’s goal is to minimize maternal mortality rate in the Republic of South Sudan.” Read: Gurtong
South Sudan TV reported on 19 July on the visit of UNFPA Regional Director for Africa Bunmi Makinwa and Regional Director for Arab States Hafedh Chekir. The directors met with high-level representatives of the Republic of South Sudan, such as Dr. Luka Monoja, Minister of Health of ROSS, and Makuac Teny Youk, Minster of Youth, Recreation and Sports, of ROSS. Mr. Makinwa made several statements recognizing the urgent need to reduce maternal mortality in South Sudan, and inclusion of youth in all programming, as 70 per cent of the population of ROSS is under 18. The Regional Director reassured the newborn country of UNFPA’s support, as the presence of the UNFPA office in South Sudan is currently being strengthened.
Multiple media outlets reported on 18 July on the opening of a workshop on nursing and midwifery education standards and midwifery curricula that took place from 18-22 July in Juba. UNFPA Regional Director for Africa Bunmi Makinwa congratulated the newborn Republic of South Sudan with its Independence, and said, “Ensuring that the midwife has the necessary competencies to function properly will go a long way in reducing the unacceptable high maternal and neonatal death and morbidity. Having effective midwifery education programmes is one way to achieve this.” Oye Times quoted UNFPA Midwifery Specialist Ulrika Rehnstrom, as she pointed out that a cultural change is needed as well. “Their husbands won’t allow them to deliver in hospitals. We need change of attitude.” Read: Oye Times
Al Jazeera reported on 10 July on the situation at Juba Teaching Hospital in Juba, South Sudan. A lack of proper primary care facilities in South Sudan means the doctors here are often overworked: Many of the doctors at the hospital come to work seven days a week; Mergani Abdallah, an obstetrician/gynecologist, said he couldn't remember the last time he had a full day off. He also noted that the hospital only receives five delivery chairs each year from the United Nations Population Fund, and that they quickly fall into disrepair. His wing does not have enough beds or fetal monitors, either. Doctors at the hospital are skeptical that the government will resolve any of these problems quickly - though Napoleon said he does appreciate one recent government project. Read: Al Jazeera
Agence France Presse reported on 4 July that Nyanath Kier's protective arms cradle her crying baby, who entered the world just days before the south of Africa’s largest country is itself born as a new nation. The little girl, as yet unnamed, will grow up in the separate country of south Sudan -- and tough times lie ahead for both. When the south achieves full independence on July 9, the oil-rich but grossly impoverished land will join an unenviable club of states such as Afghanistan and Somalia at the bottom of global rankings for health and social indicators. Ms. Kier has already beaten the odds. More women die because of pregnancy, labour and delivery complications here than anywhere else in the world. "No woman should die giving life, but unfortunately my country south Sudan has the highest maternal mortality ratio in the world," said Alexander Dimiti, a doctor working for UNFPA. "Worse still, they are dying from complications that we have knowledge and skills to prevent," added Dimiti, who helps the health ministry to train midwives. After the decades-long war with the north ended in 2005, there were just eight midwives in the south, around one for every million people. Today, there are still only around 100. But improving health will be only one of many hurdles. Read: Agence France Presse