The Citizen on 17 December reported that every day across the country, hundreds of school girls become pregnant, bringing their learning to a halt. Tackling the taboo of mothers returning to school, say campaigners, will reduce the rate of teenage pregnancies. "Education is an absolute priority in these regions," says Dr. Julitta Onabanjo, UNFPA Representative. "It is really stark, in regions like Arusha and Kilimanjaro where education is valued, for example, women have an average of two to three births, but in places like Shinyanga there are seven births on average. It is still a widespread mentality in Africa that your family is your wealth".
El Diario Colatino and El Mundo reported on 16 December on the UNFPA delivery to the Salvadorean Ministry of Health of 22 medical kits with materials to be distributed in affected areas by Tropical Depression 12-E. Read in Spanish: El Diario Colatino
Georgia Today reported on 15 December that from December 1 till December 10 UNFPA Georgia Country Office, in partnership with the International Centre on Conflict and Negotiation (ICCN), Georgian Youth Development and Education Association (GYDEA) and the Caucasus Social Marketing Association (CSMA), organized the Youth Contest within the frames of 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-based Violence and UNFPA global “7 Billion Actions” campaigns. During ten days - from December 1 till December 10 - every day a group of young people presented their flash mobs or performances in Tbilisi streets and created own articles, slogans, connected with gender- based violence and HIV/AIDS. The global theme for the 2011 campaign is From Peace in the Home to Peace in the World: Let’s Challenge Militarism and End Violence against Women! “Domestic violence, raping, militarism are the main reasons that are ruining lives of many woman,” said Gvantsa Kordzakhia, 21, one of the participators of the campaign.
The youth contest will finish on December 13, 2011 by the awarding ceremony of the contest winners. Read in English: Georgia Today
Al Sahafa reported that the federal ministry of health in Sudan, together with UNFPA, organized an advocacy open on midwifery in the federal midwifery school of Sudan. The day activities were covered by the media highlighting the role of UNFPA in supporting midwifery in Sudan. Alsahafa, a popular Arabic daily, made the support of UNFPA to midwifery as a head line to the article and quoted Pamela Delargy UNFPA acting representative. Read in Arabic: Al Sahafa
The Concord Times Newspaper reported on 15 December that as a demonstration for its continuous support for the free health programme for lactating mothers and pregnant women to minimize death rates in the country, the United Nations Population Fund, UNFPA, on Monday 12 December handed over the refurbished and expanded Special Care Baby Unit and Mother’s Lodge at the PCM Hospital, to the Government of Sierra Leone. While handing over the unit, the UNFPA Country Representative among other things said that UNFPA Sierra Leone committed its own core resources to the refurbishment, expansion and creation of the mother’s lodge and baby care unit for neonates in the hospital. The Minister of Health and Sanitation, Haja Hawa Bangura, thanked UNFPA for their support in the health sector.
Several media outlets reported on 15 December on the launching of UNFPA’s State of World Population report 2011 as well as a 7B national statistical booklet entitled “Lebanon in a World of Seven Billion: New Figures … Pending Issues.” This double event was held in the presence of the Minister of Social Affairs. The various sections of the 2011 SWOP were briefly presented in the event with key highlights and examples from the Arab States. The national statistical booklet was developed by the Population and Development Project, a joint collaboration between the Ministry of Social Affairs (MOSA) and UNFPA, in an effort to contribute to the promotion of the theme for the World Population Day 2011 “Seven billion people counting on each other.” The booklet includes key indicators/statistics on a number of population and development themes relevant to Lebanon and seeks to focus attention on the urgency and importance of population issues and on the need to find solutions. It also includes national data pertaining to the 7B Campaign themes. It also aims to serve as an advocacy tool targeting primarily media professionals however could also be addressed to key stakeholders such as parliamentarians, officials in public administrations, researchers, and NGOs, to draw their attention on priority population issues in Lebanon. As such, the booklet is meant to act as an important source of concise, friendly and quick information on main indicators/statistics at the national level. Read in Arabic: Lebanon Files, National News Agency, Al Balad, As Safir, El Nashra, Al Moustaqbal.
Metropolis published on 15 December an op-ed by UNFPA Representative David Lawson on the occasion of the end of the 7 Billion Campaign launched on the occasion of the world population reaching 7 billion. Mr. Lawson outlined the need to plan ahead and define urban, and social policy to deal with ageing, youth, and ensure a better world for future generations.
Congo-site reported on 15 December on a meeting called by UNFPA Executive Director Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin with all UNFPA Representatives worldwide in Jordan, from 5-7 December, to discuss the UNFPA’s new business plan, the Executive Director's vision for the organization, and a unified strategy to support government and civil society for the benefit of peoples. Read in French: Congo-site
The Nation reported on 15 December that up to 400 women suffering from fistula have been treated since 2009 through fistula camps run by the Malawi government, with assistance from the United Nations Population Fund.
Although Malawi has no specific data on the extent of the fistula problem, a UNFPA survey in 2009 indicated that the problem is rampant, especially in rural areas with data collected from hospital records and through community surveys in nine districts revealing that 1,581 women had fistula that year. Read in English: The Nation
Multiple media outlets reported on 14 December on UNFPA’s continued support to youth, this time through the Sharek Youth Forum, by assisting young intellectuals and artists in various fields and topics, such as poetry and literature through the Darwish Fund another initiative of Be the Change. “UNFPA encourages youth ages 18 – 29 to pursue aspirations of writing poetry, novels, or through art, producing documentaries of cultural nature, and through music,” Mr. Bader Zamareh, Sharek Executive Director, said.
The Guardian Weekly on 14 Decemebr reported that gender-based violence (GBV) has been on the rise in Zanzibar, while a civil organization to assist those in need has called for more coordination among stakeholders. Although Zanzibar has managed to establish a centre from helping abused women and children at Mnazi Mmoja Hospital, but it has not been fully effective due to many challenges. The centre which is supported by UNFPA was established five months ago through the initiatives from Zanzibar’s Ministry of Social Welfare, Youths, Children and Women Development and the Zanzibar Female Lawyer’s Association (ZAFELA) as one of the interventions in GBV.
Daily News on 14 December reportecd that the UN System, in the spirit of Delivering as One in Tanzania, donated ambulances and maternal newborn and child health equipment in support to improve to improve health systems in the country. The Permanent Secretary in the MInistry of Health and Social Welfare, Ms. Blandina Nyoni, thanked the agencies (UNFPA, WHO, WFP, UICEF and ILO), for their generous support. "The equipment and ambulances that we have received today will assist to fill existing gaps that were identified during the assessment for emergency obstetric and child care carried out throughout support of the joint program me two," commented Ms. Nyoni.
IRAQ: Minister of Planning Attends UNFPA Workshop Discussing Findings of National Statistical System Functional Review
Al-Takheteet Al-Youm on 14 December reported that the Iraqi Minister of Planning Dr. Ali Al-Shokri stressed the importance of statistics and information in planning and development, encouraging in this the efforts of the Central Statistical Organization (CSO) in developing the Statistical System in the country with the support of UNFPA. Dr. Al-Shokri joined the last session of the workshop organized by UNFPA in Istanbul on 15-16 November to discuss the findings of the eight functional review missions facilitated by UNFPA in Iraq in July and September 2011 to assess the Statistical System in the country. The workshop was attended by all concerned staff from CSO, Kurdistan Regional Statistical Office and from line ministries who participated in the functional review missions with the international experts mobilized by UNFPA in Iraq. UNFPA Chief Technical Advisor Dr. Luay Shabaneh presented the main findings of the experts and pointed out the strength points in the Iraqi Statistical System and highlighted its drawbacks that include, among other things, the weakness of its infrastructure and its centralization that doesn’t go in line with the country’s orientation towards decentralization. The workshop is considered the last activity in (phase I) of National Statistical System Modernization Project supported by UNFPA and was an opportunity to discuss this phase’s findings and the next phase (2012-2014) workplan of workshops and capacity building with the concerned national counterparts. In conclusion the participants endorsed (phase I) review findings, agreed on the proposed “Statistical Work Code of Practice Policy Document” and the “Statistics Dissemination Policy”, and endorsed (2012-2014) workplan of National Statistical System reform. Read in Arabic: Al-Takheteet Al-Youm
Multiple media outlets reported on 14 December on launching of the State of World Population Report 2011 that took place in Gaza, an event that was funded by UNFPA. “Population in Palestine is increasing” Ms. Barbara Piazza-Georgi, UNFPA Representative, said. “Population in Gaza is 1.6 million, and the number will increase by the 2025, which will impose a great challenge that needs to be addressed through providing needed services” she continued. Read in Arabic: Alquds, MILAD, Bab Alarab, Al Haya, Refugees Affairs, Maan, Amad, Quds Net, Panet, AlHurriah, Al Ikhbarya
All local newspapers and Petra News Agency reported on 14 December that the Higher Population Council (HPC), in cooperation with the United Nations Population fund (UNFPA), launched a national plan to monitor the implementation of policies pertaining to the demographic opportunity.
The plan provides a work mechanism for the HPC to use in monitoring demographic opportunity policies and scenarios in order to help ensure the achievement of related economic, social and development goals.
According to the policy, the demographic opportunity becomes evident when the working age population (individuals aged 15-64 years) starts to grow significantly higher compared to the population of dependents (under 15 and over 64). Read in Arabic: Al Rai, Al Arabalyawm and Petra News Agency Read in English: Jordan Times
Les Voix du Monde reported on 14 December on National Maternal Health Day celebrated on 12 October, in the presence of Health Minister George Moyen, CARMMA Ambassador Senator Philomene Fouty-Soungou and UNFPA Representative David Lawson. On this occasion the Health Minister announced that the maternal death rate had gone down from 871 for 100,000 live births in 2009 to 300 in 2011. Mr. Lawson received an Award for UNFPA achievements and support on maternal health in Congo.
The Ethiopian News Agency reported on 13 December that a high-level advocacy meeting on child marriage was conducted in the Assosa Town in Western Ethiopia. The National Coalition of Women Against AIDS (NCWH), in collaboration with UNFPA, organized the half-day high level advocacy meeting on stopping child marriage on December 12. The advocacy meeting was organized with the intention of looking at the achievements of the NCWH in its interventions on stopping early marriage over the last three years and discussing what could be done to address this harmful practice in a more effective and coordinated manner at the national level. UNFPA has been providing support to the NCWH to implement the “Stopping Early Marriage” initiative in the Amhara, Benishangul-Gumuz and Tigray Regional States.
The high level advocacy meeting was attended by H.E. Woizero Azeb Mesfin- First Lady Ethiopia and Board chairperson of NCWH – Members of Parliament, officials from the aforementioned three regions, members of the diplomatic corps, representatives from UN Agencies and the African Union Commission and other partners working on stopping child marriage.
Various media outlets reported that on 13 December, the United Nations Population Fund in Georgia held the award ceremony for the winners of the youth contest “Elephant in the Room,” at the gallery Kopala/Vernisazhi. Youth contest “Elephant in the Room” was held in partnership with the International Centre on Conflict and Negotiation (ICCN), Youth Development and Education Association (GYDEA) and the Caucasus Social Marketing Association (CSMA).
The contest was conducted within the framework of the 16 Days of Activism against gender-based violence and UNFPA global “7 Billion Actions” campaigns. The name of the contest was related to the metaphor “Elephant in the Room” for an obvious problem that is being ignored or goes unaddressed. The contest aimed to raise awareness of the general public and most importantly the youth on important social issues, such as HIV/AIDS, gender-based violence and human rights that still remain challenges faced by Georgia in the world of 7 billion.
Media outlets reported on 13 December on the midwifery job description workshop that was organized by the Ministry of Health and funded by UNFPA. “Maternal mortality rate can be decreased with good midwifery practices and performances” H.E. Dr. Fathi Abou Moghli, Minister of Health (MoH), said. "In Palestine from 1990 – 2010, and according to World Bank statistics, the mm rate was recorded at 92/100,000 deaths, and according to MoH statistics in 2010 it was 32/100,000 deaths” he continued. “We are hoping to bring this figure down by 2015 since maternal health is one of the MDGs ” he said. Read in Arabic: Alquds
Les Depeches de Brazzaville reported on 13 December on a colloquim held in Paris on 10 December about the support by the Congolese diaspora to the national health system in Congo. On this occasion, National AIDS Committee Executive Secretary Marie-Frankhe Puruhence called on medical doctors abroad to come back home to support national efforts to strengthen the national health systems. She informed of the joint UNFPA-NAC initiative on female condoms recently launched by UNFPA Representative David Lawson and herself on World AIDS Day. Read in French: Les Depeches de Brazzaville
Les Depeches de Brazzaville reported on 13 December on the celebration of Human Rights Day on 10 December in Brazzaville. Jointly organized by UNFPA, UNICEF, NGO Association des Femmes Juristes, and the US Embassy on the theme "Celebrating action of Human Rights Activists" it was the occasion to debate on the matter and to present an exhibition, including women rights. Read in French: Les Depeches de Brazzaville
Al Rai and Addustour reported on 13 December that UNFPA Jordan held a meeting for all its partners in Jordan to present the results of the evaluation done for UNFPA’s Seventh Country Programme (2008-2012).
This evaluation aimed to assess UNFPA’s programme in terms of its design, management and contribution to its five stated outputs under each component.
The whole programme, according to the assessment, was effective in achieving its objectives; as it was relevant to both national and UN priorities and visions. Also, the program was found to be very efficient in terms of staff, budget and number of partners. Read in Arabic: Addustour and Al Rai
DailyNews reported on 12 December that in the spirit of Delivering as One in Tanzania, three agencies, namely UNICEF, UNFPA, and UNWomen, jointly launched their reports in Dar es Salaam with a focus on adolescents and issues affecting the population. During the launching ceremony, Hon. Anne Makinda, Speaker of the National Parliament, said that the implication of population growth will become bigger burden if it does not go hand in hand with the economic growth. UNFPA Deputy Representative Mariam Khan on the launch of the SWOP 2011, “People and Possibilities in a world of seven Billion”, says the world’s population reached 7 billion people on October 31, this year marking an important milestone adding that UNFPA sees it as a challenge, an opportunity and a call for action. “The 7 billion milestone is a wake up call, it is a reminder that we must act now," it addes. As part of UN System Delivering as One in Tanzania, UNFPA is addressing the needs of youth, girls, and women by supporting the provision of comprehensive reproductive health care including family planning and ensuring strong prevention agenda for HIV and AIDS as well as addressing population and development issues. Read in English: DailyNews
Media outlets reported on 12 December on the film festival celebrations that were organized by the Media Department at the An- Najah National University in Nablus, in coordination with the Palestinian Initiative for the Promotion of Global Dialogue and Democracy (MIFTAH) and funded by UNFPA as part of the project activity entitled “Gender Equity and Protection.” “This year’s festival focuses on violence again women. Women in Palestine play a crucial role; she’s the mother, the worker, educator and freedom fighter ” Dr. Rami Hamdallah, President of An-Najah University said. Read in Arabic: Al-Quds, Najah, and MIFTAH
Jaku´eke reported on 12 December that Manuelita Escobar, Assistant Representative of the United Nation Population Fund (UNFPA) and the Ministry of Women’s Gloria Rubin, emphasized the importance of UN Women Executive Director Michelle Bachelet’s visit to Paraguay's visit. Escobar indicated that her presence helps strengthen programmes that are being implemented with support from the organization she represents. Also she remarked that her speeches create an open dialogue about gender equality issues. Read in Spanish: Jaku´eke
Radio Tunis Chaine Internationale reported on 12 December on UNFPA’s immediate response to the Libyan crisis including the provision, storage and distribution of reproductive health kits to various medical centers at the Tunisian-Libyan border area, in camps and urban settings as well as the provision of reproductive health services (antenatal and post natal care, referral for medical delivery, prevention and treatment of STIs, Family Planning , etc.). Listen in French: Radio Tunis Chaine Internationale
All local newspapers and Petra News Agency reported on 12 December that a press conference was held as an introduction for the coming “First Jordanian National Conference for the Prevention of Violence against Children and Women: Reality and Challenges,” which will take place from 18-19 December. The Jordan River Foundation/Queen Rania Foundation, in cooperation with UNFPA, and UNICEF in Jordan organized this conference.
The organizers of the conference (JRF & UNICEF & UNFPA) clarified the main objective and messages of the conference for the reporters, and also explained how this network was formulated stating that professionals working in different organizations formed a network aiming to prevent all sorts of violence against children in Jordan. This network decided to conduct the first national conference to end violence against children and women.
Ms. Muna Idris, UNFPA Assistant Representative, said that the timing of the conference is great for the United Nations Agencies in Jordan which are planning their new UNDAF and Country Programmes for the coming 5 years, as this conference will assist them in identifying the national priorities and issues that should be tackled in their programmes.
Ms. Idris also stated that the conference will aim to share information between professionals in the different fields and to evaluate the current situation of women and child safety in Jordan, highlight gaps, and suggest solutions. Read in Arabic: Petra News Agency, Al Arabalyawm, Addustour Read in English: Jordan Times