The Guardian reported on 30 June that in an effort to reduce adolescent pregnancies, health providers, teachers and students in Turiani Province are lobbying government officials to open contraceptive access for young people. According to a research project conducted by the Youth Africa Alliance with support from UNFPA, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Pathfinder International, and the Programme for Appropriate Technology in Health (PATH), lack of attention to adolescents’ sexual and reproductive health in policy and programming is a serious challenge. While Tanzania’s laws support full access to youth-friendly sexual and reproductive health services, the report found that numerous barriers remain to fully implementing these laws.
The Daily Times reported on 30 June that UNFPA Assistant Representative Dorothy Nyasulu opened a three-day training on contingency planning with a call for governmental and nongovernmental agencies to address reproductive health issues in planning responses to disasters.
The Daily Observer reported on 30 June and Today reported on 29 June that the National Youth Council on behalf of UNFPA presented a vehicle to RAID The Gambia, a voluntary youth organisation working in the areas of drug abuse and alcohol and other problems confronting young people. The Daily Observer and Today
Nation News reported on 30 June that the Barbados Council for the Disabled (BCD) launched a peer education campaign aimed at improving disabled youth’s awareness of sexual and reproductive health issues. Administration project officer for the BCD, Rose-Ann Foster-Vaughan, explained that because many people did not recognise the importance of understanding the dangers of STIs, “HIV/AIDS and other controllable sexual diseases have spread at an alarming rate” She said that this had prompted the BCD to partner with the UNFPA to “create a programme that would heighten awareness of the need for sexual reproductive education for persons with disabilities.” The director of the UNFPA Regional Office for the Caribbean, Dan Baker, explained that UNFPA, “provided information and services to persons with disabilities to increase awareness of sexual reproductive health issues and rights.” Read: Nation News
UN News Centre reported on 30 June that the role of culture in promoting the empowerment of women and upholding human rights was hotly debated by senior United Nations officials, activists and academics as the UN ECOSOC met in New York to push for women and girls to be at the forefront of efforts to achieve development targets. “Laws are important, but they’re not sufficient because often traditions are stronger than the implementation of laws,” Thoraya Ahmed Obaid, Executive Director of UNFPA told a televised debate conducted at UN Headquarters in New York. Read: UN News Centre
IRIN reported on 29 June that several districts have run out of condoms after the National Medical Stores’ (NMS) stocks were revised downwards. In the past, the NMS had a minimum stock level of six months and a maximum of 12 months, but this has since been changed to a maximum stock level of six months' worth of condoms due to the large amount of storage space required. At the Kampala headquarters of an NGO that looks after sex workers, staff members make calls to the government, UNFPA and various NGOs in search of much-needed free condoms. "The clinic where we normally get them has none and UNFPA says they can only give them to the government, so we are stuck," said Macklean Kyomya, founder of the Women's Organization Networking for Human Rights Advocacy. "Our members [sex workers] up-country need condoms or they are at risk of sexually transmitted infections and HIV." Read: IRIN
Congo-site reported on 29 June on the situation of women refugees in the Northern Province of the Republic of Congo, host of some 120,000 refugees from the Democratic Republic of Congo. Concern remains over women health and pregnant women delivering in difficult environments. The article focused on UNFPA efforts to augment health equipment, supplies and personnel in existing health centers in the Likouala Province and in some of the 50 refugee sites spread over 300 km on the Oubangui river between the two Congos. UNFPA Representative David Lawson recently led a field visit to the refugee camps and reassured refugees and Congo Government of UNFPA’s commitment to continue providing assistance. Read in French: Congo-Site
Congo-site reported on 29 June on a meeting between national and provincial leaders of the indigenous peoples of the Republic of Congo
with UNFPA Representative David Lawson. The meeting coincided with the indigenous peoples’ General Assembly meeting in Brazzaville. UNFPA is currently delineating an action plan for enhanced assistance for indigenous people in Congo. Mr. Lawson said, "UNFPA stands by vulnerable populations, will strengthen its strategy based on feedback received here and during my meeting with indigenous leaders in the Likouala Province. Together with other partners, we will provide all possible assistance to indigenous people, including women dispropportionately affected in their rights and health" Read in French: Congo-site
Aratu and JUS Brasil reported on 29 June that a workshop on sexual and reproductive health was to held from 6 to 8 July in Salvador, Bahia as part of the Technical Cooperation Agreement signed between UNFPA and the Municipality of Salvador. The workshop's 120 invited participants took part in sessions on gender, race and ethnic issues, violence against women, responsible parenthood and maternal health. Read in Portuguese: Aratu and JUS Brasil
Solomon Star News reported on 22 June that provincial health coordinators, promoters and media representatives are currently attending a first ever workshop on Behavioural Change Communication Training at the Commonwealth Youth Programme centre.The workshop was facilitated by Isikeli Vulavou, a programme associate with the UNFPA Pacific Sub Regional Office in Suva, Fiji Islands. Director of Health Promotion Division Alby Lovi urged participants to grasp what they can learn from the workshop, saying “This workshop is very important because it will draw us closer to roll out reproductive issues effectively to the communities.” UNFPA is the main financial and technical supporter for the workshop. Read: Solomon Star News
Multiple media outlets reported on 22 June that Turkey welcomed a decision by UNFPA to place its Eastern Europe and Central Asia Regional Office in Istanbul. Turkey’s Foreign Ministry said Istanbul would become one of the important locations for United Nations following UNFPA decision. UNFPA Executive Director Thoraya Obaid formally announced that Istanbul was selected during the recent session of the UNFPA/UNDP Executive Board. Read: Anatolia News Agency, A.A. and TUR
Union reported on 29 June, TV RTG1 reported on 26 June and Africa No.1 reported on 23 June on the planning and launch of an initiative of male leadership for women's rights, jointly organized by the Parliament and UNFPA, under the auspices of National Assembly President, Guy Nzouma Ndama and UNFPA Country Director, David Lawson. The initiative began with an historic march by male leaders that gathered MPs of all political parties, members of government, religious, media and civil society leaders, ambassadors and UN agency heads, and other leaders in support of women's rights. Starting from the Senate, the march ended up at the National Assembly where women parliamentarians and a hundred of women welcomed the marchers. Mr. Lawson said, "the cause of women must be OUR cause. It is only with strong and devoted male leaders' involvement and actions that gender equality can be achieved." Following a planning meeting with Mr. Ndama, Mr. Lawson indicated that Parliament would devote a day to sensitization on population and development issues in the fall.
Multiple media outlets reported on 28 June that the Women’s Research & Training Center, Aden University, in cooperation with UNFPA organized workshop to present results of studies about demographic consequences of internal migration in Yemen from gender perspective. Fifty participants, including university professors, researchers, and specialists in population issues attended the workshop. Participants recommended promoting for agricultural development and basic education in rural areas in Yemen, especially among women and girls. The workshop also addressed the need to promote for good urban governance and urban growth at nationwide level. Read in Arabic: Saba and 14October
UN News Centre reported on 28 June that the heads of two United Nations agencies welcomed the decision by leaders of the Group of 8 (G-8) industrialized countries to boost efforts to improve maternal and child health in poorer countries, urging the world to ensure that no woman died while giving birth. “Even though the number of women who die from preventable causes during pregnancy and childbirth seems to be declining, far too many mothers still die every day, which has a devastating impact on families, communities and nations,” Thoraya Ahmed Obaid, the Executive Director of UNFPA said in a statement. “Given the wealth and technology of the 21st century, no woman should die giving life,” she added. Read: UN News Centres
Mukala Today reported on 25 June that the Charitable Society for Social Welfare (CSSW), in cooperation with UNFPA, organized a workshop on reproductive health for thirty participants from mosques’ preachers and imams, members of local councils, representatives from associations and civil society’s organizations, head of police stations, influential community figures, and women’s leaders. The workshop programme included three sessions on the concepts of gender, reproductive rights, and the role of community leaders. Secretary-General of CSSW branch in Al-Mukalah gave a speech in the opening session of the workshop. He discussed the workshop's aim: to expand education and awareness on the importance of reproductive health for creating healthy community. Read in Arabic: Mukala Today
Timor Post reported on 25 June that the National Police of Timor-Leste together with UNFPA launched a manual on gender-based violence on 24 June. The manual, which addresses different dimensions of gender-based violence, is meant to improve police responses and inform investigations of gender-based violence.
The Gleaner reported on June 25 that, while progress has been made in reducing adolescent pregnancies, Daniel Baker, director sub-regional office of UNFPA, said more work is needed to be done to address the problem of the teen pregnancy. A recently-released survey for 2008 showed that while fertility among females 15-19 years was 72 births per 1,000 females, it was 124 births per 1,000 for females aged 20-24. Read: The Gleaner
Kompas reported on 25 June on the work of the Fatayat Nahdlatul Ulama. Fayata NU, in collaboration with UNFPA and the National Family Planning Board, focuses on reproductive health education for couples before getting married which is considered strategic to contribute to people's welfare. A recent public accountability meeting on gender and reproductive health programmes, provided an opportunity to discuss achievements over the last 10 years, as Fatyat NU's activities have covered husband-wife relations, violence against women, early marriage, unwanted pregnancy, and female circumcision. Fatyat Nahdlatul Ulama is an organization of young women under the Nahdlatul Ulama, which is the largest Muslim organization in Indonesia. Read in Bahasa Indonesia: Kompas
Belarusian News reported on 24 June that the office of the prosecutor for Petrykov region was considering an initiative to determine paternity of children abandoned by their fathers. The initiative would allow fathers to claim paternity voluntarily or in court, and require them to provide financial support or take custody of their children. UNFPA Programme Analyst Tatyana Haplichnik commented on the initiative, saying, “Regardless of the importance of giving the children back to their biological fathers, I don’t think that this is how the persecutor and educational establishment should spend their efforts and time. . . What is more important nowadays is to promote the responsible parenthood and fatherhood in particular." She called for increased efforts to support men's involvement and responsibility in their families' lives. Read in Russian: Belarusian News
Saba’a reported on 24 June that Yemen underlined the significance of the UNDP role in helping meet the MDGs, calling on donor countries to demonstrate their commitment to financial pledges to Yemen to attain the goals by 2015. In its statement at the annual meeting of the executive council of the UNDP and the UNFPA in Geneva, Yemen pointed to problems the developing countries faced over the last years including the crises of food and power, global slump and negative impacts of climate change that hampered their efforts to attain the MDGs. Read: Saba’a
The New Times reported on 24 June that people who were displaced by recent landslides in Gakenke District received an assortment of hygienic kits from UNFPA, in partnership with PROFEMME Twese Hamwe, a local NGO. The May disaster claimed six lives in Cyoko and Minazi Sectors, and left several houses destroyed. Speaking to the recipients of the kits, UNFPA's Dr. Gifty Adriko expressed her sympathy to the affected residents."UNFPA is committed to promoting reproductive health and rights of all people in Rwanda, and that includes refugees, internally displaced and people affected by natural disasters," she said. Read: The New Times
The Daily Nation reported on 24 June that a team of population experts, working with the National Coordinating Agency for Population Development (NCAPD), said that statistics showed a clear link between population growth and economic development. The threat posed by high maternal and infant death rate, most of these at delivery, led NCAPD to ask for more money from Kenya lawmakers. The experts called for a check on the country's population growth. All these efforts require money - at least Sh5.3 billion - in order to achieve the MDGs by 2015, they said. The returns for pumping more money into family planning and contraceptives, they said, will save the country Sh20 billion in the next five years. The 2010-2011 budget for the component is Sh530 million, and is expected to jump to Sh2 billion the following year. "We may not be economically sustainable if we continue with this trend (of high population growth)," warned Cecilia Kimemia of UNFPA. Read: Daily Nation
Sidwaya reported on 24 June that a caravan of press traversed the area of the Sahel from 15-18 June. UNFPA supported the trip, which aimed to make it possible for reporters to better understand the maternal and infant health situation in the area of the Sahel. Read in French: Sidwaya
NationNews.com reported on 24 June that the Barbados Council for the Disabled recognized that, as in many other areas of development, people with disabilities were marginalized in sexuality education programmes. This prompted the council to partner with UNFPA to create a programme that would heighten awareness of the need for sexual, reproductive education for people with disabilities. The overarching goal of the project is to deliver a comprehensive programme to educate young adults with disabilities on sexual reproductive health issues, which in turn can be replicated in their everyday lives. Read: NationNews.com
The Daily Star reported on 24 June on a discussion of possible revisions to the national youth policy held on 23 June. Speakers said the young people should be prepared as skilled workforce for the world job market and that the youth policy should address this issue. The recommendations came from a national dialogue on “Revisiting Youth Policy of Bangladesh” jointly organized by the population sciences department of Dhaka University and the UNFPA. According to the Department of Youth Development (DYD), some 4.9 crore people of Bangladesh are youth who are aged between 18 to 35, said Noor Mohammad, assistant representative of UNFPA, in his keynote paper. Read: The Daily Star
Multiple media outlets reported on 23 June that results of a study on Gender-Based Violence (GBV) were presented in a special workshop in Aden. The workshop organized by Women's National Committee (WNC) in coordination with Aden University and with UNFPA support. The workshop was attended by more than hundred participants from Aden and Sana’a Universities, civil society’s organizations, religious scholars, women leaders, local councils’ members, and number of interested and specialists on woman and GBV issues. Speeches delivered in the workshop by Aden University Rector, General Secretary of Local Council, WNC Chairwoman, and UNFPA Assistance Representative emphasized the importance of the study and its results, urging stakeholders to benefit from them and create model of partnership for developing and strengthen women’s role in Yemen. Read in Arabic: Al-Tagheer, Nabanews, Aden, and Sahafa
CNBC reported on 23 June on efforts to promote and distribute male and female condoms as part of HIV/AIDS prevention programmes. UNFPA was mentioned, along with agencies such as USAID and DFID, for its part in condom programming. Watch: CNBC
Multiple media outlets reported on 22-23 June on the presentation of the results of research on the Index Of Stigma Towards People Living With HIV And AIDS In Paraguay. The research project was to be presented 23 June by the Foundation Beat, with support from UNFPA, under the regional project of the Global Network of People Living with HIV and AIDS, the International Community of Women Living with HIV and AIDS, the International Federation of Planned Parenthood and UNAIDS. Read in Spanish: IP Paraguay, Jaku’eke, Radio Viva and ABC
UN News Centre reported on 23 June that United Nations aid agencies are widening their relief efforts in western Myanmar, where more than 60 people have been killed and thousands of other villagers forced out of their homes by floods brought on by monsoonal rains. UNHCR reported that more than 27,000 families have been affected by the floods, which struck Myanmar’s Rakhine state and Bangladesh. The agency is working with UNICEF, UNFPA, NGOs and government health staff to deploy mobile medical teams to flood-affected towns and villages. Read: UN News Centre
Gabon Eco and Gabon-Matin reported on 23 June on a press briefing by UNFPA Country Director David Lawson for members of the UNFPA Journalists Network on Population and Development. Mr. Lawson reviewed UNFPA’s upcoming activities and invited journalists to submit applications for an award for journalism on population and development launched in March 2010. A journalists' training on population and development scheduled for October 2010 was also announced. Read in French: Gabon Eco