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Posts Tagged ‘youth’

On July 1st, the Women Deliver team announced the top five highlights from the 2010 conference (June 7-9). See below for a summary of the conference highlights–with links to publications, videos, photos, and additional information that came out of the conference.

This post was originally posted on the Women Deliver website and is reposted on MMD with permission from Women Deliver.
conference-participants.jpg

Women Deliver 2010 Conference participants

Thank you to everyone who contributed to the success of the second Women Deliver global conference. To put world leaders on notice that the time for action on maternal health is now, 3,400 advocates, policymakers, development leaders, health care professionals, youth, and media from 146 countries converged on Washington, DC on June 7-9 at Women Deliver 2010. More than 800 speeches and presentations were given at the six plenaries and 120 breakout sessions.  The heads of five UN agencies, plus the Secretary-General of the United Nations, attended. Thirty countries, UN agencies, the World Bank, corporations, and foundations helped support Women Deliver. Please see below for highlights and recaps of the conference.

1. Key Statements. Read the outcome statements from the:

2. Webcasts. Watch the videos from our plenary sessions and our press conferences, and watch Hillary Clinton’s address to the Women Deliver 2010 attendees.

3. Photos. Take a look at photos from the plenary sessions, breakout sessions and other conference events, and download them at no cost.

4. Programme. Review the plenary and breakout sessions that were held at Women Deliver 2010.

5. Publications and Advocacy Tools. Visit our Knowledge Center to download publications and advocacy tools, including:

Stay tuned for our summary report on breakout sessions by theme.

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Maternal Mortality in Sierra Leone: The Story of Mamma is a collection of photos and captions that tell the tragic story of the death of Mamma Sessay, an 18-year old who lost her life giving birth in Sierra Leone, a country with one of the highest maternal mortality ratios in the world.

Time

The captions on the photos explain that Mamma was forced to marry at age 14 and first gave birth when she was 15. At the age of 18, she gave birth to the first of a pair of twins and then her contractions stopped…

View the photo essay here.

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A recent study by the International Institute of Population Sciences (IIPS) and the Population Council of India outlines just how prevalent early marriage remains in many parts of India.

Bernama.com (Malaysian National News Agency)

This article cites many of the findings of the recent study in India by IIPS and the Population Council. It also raises several of the implications of early marriage in India—including unintended pregnancies and infant and maternal morbidity and mortality.

Read the full story, Child Wedlock Still Haunts India.

For more information on the Population Council’s work in India, click here.

This story, in Times of India, offers more information on the state of reproductive health among youth in India.

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A NOW team from PBS recently went to Haiti to investigate high levels of maternal mortality in the country. They happened to be in the Haiti when the earthquake hit. In collaboration with the Bureau for International Reporting (BIR), a non-profit video news production company, PBS produced Saving Haiti’s Mothers, a show that examines the state of maternal health in Haiti before the earthquake and immediately following it.

NOW on PBS

“Haiti’s catastrophic earthquake, in addition to leaving lives and institutions in ruin, also exacerbated a longtime lethal risk in Haiti: Dying during childbirth. Challenges in transportation, education, and quality health care contribute to Haiti having the highest maternal mortality rate in the Western Hemisphere, a national crisis even before the earthquake struck. While great strides are being made with global health issues like HIV/AIDS, maternal mortality figures worldwide have seen virtually no improvement in 20 years. Worldwide, over 500,000 women die each year during pregnancy. This week, a NOW team that had been working in Haiti during the earthquake reports on this deadly but correctable trend. They meet members of the Haitian Health Foundation (HHF), which operates a network of health agents in more than 100 villages, engaging in pre-natal visits, education, and emergency ambulance runs for pregnant women…”

Read the full story and watch the special here.

Learn more about Haitian Health Foundation, UNFPA, and Family Care International—all organizations featured in the show.

Visit the Bureau for International Reporting (BIR) site here.

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The Reproductive Health Response in Crises Consortium applauds current relief efforts in Haiti while calling on humanitarian actors to provide lifesaving reproductive health services for women displaced by the earthquake.

The RHRC Consortium

The RHRC Consortium calls on humanitarian actors to meet the needs of women and girls—including the 63,000  pregnant women in Port au Prince.  (Other organizations have put the estimate lower at 37,000.) The RHRC estimates that 7,000 will deliver in the coming month.

The statement includes calls to action on issues of safe delivery,  sexual violence and exploitation, HIV/AIDS, and family planning.

Click here to read their full statement.

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UNFPA is asking for help as they try to establish emergency obstetric services for the estimated 37,000 pregnant women affected by Tuesday’s earthquake in Haiti.

ReliefWeb

“…To meet the urgent maternal health and other needs of women, UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, is seeking about $4.6 million as part of the coordinated United Nations Flash Appeal that will be launched today. The funding would supplement the supplies UNFPA is already providing in Haiti and address the specific needs of women, girls and other vulnerable populations for the next six months.”

Read the full story here.

Here is a list of what UNFPA will use the additional funds for:

- Refurbish maternity wards to handle emergency obstetric care and other life-saving health services

- Deploy skilled health professionals, such as midwives, obstetricians and nurses, to affected areas to provide maternal health and emergency obstetric care

- Provide emergency safe delivery and reproductive health medicines and supplies to temporary clinics and health facilities being set up

- Help safeguard the personal hygiene and dignity of women and girls by providing related sanitary supplies

- Facilitate access of affected populations, especially young people, to psychosocial counseling and other services

- Carry out interventions to prevent gender based violence.

UNFPA offers this contact information if you are looking for more info:

In Santo Domingo: Trygve Olfarnes, Tel: +507 301 7362, Satellite:

+ 898 8169 3160 0057 1740, olfarnes@unfpa.org.

In New York: Jessica Malter, Tel: + 1 212 297 5190, malter@unpfa.org

Omar Gharzeddine, Tel: + 1 212 297 5028 gharzeddine@unfpa.org

To donate directly to UNFPA, click here.

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Watch and share Pathfinder’s video, Girl2Woman, that outlines the challenges related to sexual and reproductive health that girls face throughout their lives.

Every video shared raises $1 for Pathfinder International programs—-up to $1 million. Visit the Girl2Woman site to see more information about the initiative and an interactive time line that outlines stages of life and highlights the work that Pathfinder International does to help women at each stage. At the Girl2Woman site, you can also fill out a form to share the video with your contacts.

To learn more about Pathfinder International, click here.

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Planned Parenthood Federation of America and CEMOPLAF, an Ecuadorian reproductive health organization, are working together to train Ecuadorian teens to become community health workers in the Chimborazo region of central Ecuador.

Global Health Magazine

“Ecuador has the highest adolescent fertility rate in Latin America, and this skyrockets when we’re talking about rural or indigenous youth. Among community members in the region here, just 6 percent of women and 12 percent of men reported contraceptive use, while less than half of all women reported any knowledge of sexually transmitted infections (STIs).

This program meets the needs of a particularly underserved and hard-to-reach group, with a new contraceptive method, in a new way. The peer promoters hail from 15 different small communities within the region and are providing a brand new range of services to their peers. They meet weekly at a central clinic location to discuss challenges and attend trainings. There, CEMOPLAF also provides lunch, transportation costs and job-skills training.

All promoters attend a four-part extensive training, including an introduction to injections in general; training on Depo Provera in particular; and training in bio-safety procedures. They also learn about other contraceptive options, like the pill and condoms…”

Read the full story here.

For more information on Planned Parenthood Federation of America, click here.

To learn more about CEMOPLAF, click here.

Click here to see a previous post on this blog about a policy discussion at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington DC on health workers and task-shifting.

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Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s speech comes in time for the 15th anniversary of the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) and marks a renewed  support for and dedication to reaching the goals of ICPD and other related UN agreements, including the Millennium Development Goals, by 2015.

ICPD called on governments and development agencies to place human beings—specifically young people and women—at the very heart of the development process. The conference also called for family planning, reproductive health, basic health and education needs to be met.

Millennium Development Goal 5 aims to improve international maternal health by reducing maternal mortality by 2/3 and achieving universal access to reproductive health services by 2015.

“On Jan. 8, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will address hundreds of health and development leaders at the State Department to reaffirm the U.S. government’s commitment to achieving universal access to reproductive health for individual health, family well-being, broader economic development and a healthy planet.”

The speech is scheduled for 2:30 pm Friday, January 8, 2010.

The Secretary’s speech will be livestreamed at www.icpd2015.org.

For more information on the goals of ICPD and events marking the 15th anniversary, click here.

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The International Women’s Health Coalition lists and describes what they see as the top ten wins for women’s health and rights in 2009–and comment on next steps and challenges for each win.

RH Reality Check

The IWHC’s picks for the top ten women’s health and rights wins span topics ranging from the new Bolivian constitution that guarantees sexual and reproductive rights and the striking down of sex work criminalization in India to a new law that combats child marriage in Yemen and the upholding of the right to abortion in England.

To see the complete list with descriptions of the wins, potential next steps and challenges, click here.

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Appropriations Bill Ends Abstinence-Only Funding, Increases Family Planning

RH Reality Check

“There was a lot of good news packed into the 2010 Omnibus Appropriations bill which was passed by Congress over the weekend. For the first time ever, the appropriations bill eliminated all funding for abstinence-only sex education programs in favor of evidence-based programs that focused on preventing unintended pregnancy. The bill, which still requires the president’s signature to become law, allocates $114.5 million for teen pregnancy prevention programs, including discussion of both contraceptive use and abstinence.”

See the full article here.

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Recently, I have seen a handful of articles that address MDG5 issues and youth—ranging in topic areas from the tribulations of child-bearing children in Afghanistan and the struggles of young girls forced into early marriage in Yemen (actually from Dec. 5th)  to the role that youth are playing in demanding access to sexual and reproductive health services.

Afghanistan: The Tribulations of Child-bearing Children

IRIN Humanitarian News and Analysis

In this piece, you will meet Rabia, age 14, who was married almost a year ago and is expecting her first child.
Afghan law sets 16 as the minimum age of marriage for girls and 18 for boys, but Rabia is one of  many young girls who are forced to marry at a younger age. Most girls and women in Afghanistan have very limited access to health services and skilled attendance at the time of delivery. Afghanistan  has “among the worst maternal and infant mortality rates in the world. About 25,000 mothers die every year during pregnancy, at child birth or after delivery, according to UNFPA (equivalent to 800 deaths per 100,000 women).”

See the full story here.

Letter From Yemen: Child Brides’ Enduring Plight

Washington Post

In this article, you will meet Ayesha, a 13-year-old  girl who was married against her will to a 53-year old man. “Yemen has no minimum age for marriage, and girls as young as 8 are often forced to wed. Many become mothers soon after they reach puberty. The country has one of the highest rates of maternal mortality in the world. The death of a 12-year-old in childbirth this fall highlighted the health risks.”

See the full story here.

Young People Speak Up for Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights Worldwide, But U.S. Policy Lags

RH Reality Check

And finally, this piece from RH Reality Check outlines the role that youth are playing in advocating for increased access to information and care. “Importantly, adolescents recognize their need for better information and want it to come from reliable sources they trust. In Uganda—one of the study’s focus countries—about half of all young people said, unprompted, that they would like to get information about contraceptive methods, HIV and other STIs from teachers, health care providers or the mass media, whereas just one-third would prefer to receive information from family and one-fifth from friends.”

This article also “takes stock” of the accomplishments/shortcomings of the reproductive health agenda in the past 15 years since the United Nation’s International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) and outlines various reproductive health issues that youth continue to face around the world, highlighting the global distribution of such issues.

Read the full article here.

Adolescent Maternal Mortality: An Overlooked Crisis

Advocates for Youth

For more information on adolescent maternal mortality, check out Adolescent Maternal Mortality: An Overlooked Crisis, a publication from Advocates for Youth.

Readers, have you seen any recent articles/blogs that discuss MDG5 issues and youth? Either the burden of maternal morbidity and mortality among youth—or stories of youth standing up for their rights to reproductive health services? Please share in the comments section.

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