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  • Blog post
    Adolescent girls and young women enrolled in DREAMS through Hope Worldwide Kenya after meeting with CHANGE in Mukuru Kwa Reuben, Nairobi, Kenya.

    Adolescent girls and young women enrolled in DREAMS through Hope Worldwide Kenya after meeting with CHANGE in Mukuru Kwa Reuben, Nairobi, Kenya. Courtesy of Bergen Cooper.

    We know what works to prevent HIV. Over the course of the epidemic, we have seen the body of evidence grow. Unfortunately, in too many cases, we have also seen donors and implementers favor interventions based on ideology rather than data. In order to address HIV, there’s no question that we need to program the standard interventions like condoms, pre-exposure prophylaxis, and post-exposure prophylaxis. Yet we also need to address areas not consistently included in HIV prevention, including family planning, gender-based violence, education, access to employment, and social norms. On this World AIDS Day, I am filled with hope: A program is finally doing just that.

  • Blog post
    5 SDG Themes of People, Planet, Prosperity, Peace, and Partnership

    The 5 Sustainable Development Goal Themes of People, Planet, Prosperity, Peace, and Partnership. Source: Starbird et al. 2016. Investing in Family Planning: Key to Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. GHSP 4(2):191-210.

    The ability of women and children to live healthy and productive lives is critical to economic development and growth, peace and security, and ultimately prosperity. Helping women to time and space their pregnancies contributes to their own and their children’s health and well-being. A recently-updated USAID eLearning course highlights these healthy reproductive behaviors and suggests programmatic approaches to help women and families make healthy reproductive decisions.

  • Blog post

    This post was originally published by the Health Communication Capacity Collaborative.

    Knowledge management can be used to develop or improve systems for collecting, organizing and sharing tacit experiences and explicit resources.

    Knowledge management can be used to develop or improve systems for collecting, organizing and sharing tacit experiences and explicit resources.

    Over Skype, I listened to the HC3 team in Sierra Leone as they shared ideas for developing a virtual document repository. The need to organize virtual and paper-based documents had been identified by the Ministry of Health and Sanitation’s (MOHS) Health Education Division (HED). Health promotion materials and resources, they said, were too hard to find, difficult to access and not often in the form they wanted. As a knowledge management expert this was a problem groups from Nigeria to Tanzania had described to me many times before, but one that required a customized solution. Since I was in the U.S. and had a weak grasp of how work was conducted in a country I was going to for the first time, I listened to my teammates’ suggestions closely.

  • Blog post

    This blog post was originally published by Public Health Ambassadors Uganda.

    PHAU storytelling workshop participants

    Storytelling is a powerful way to share the personal, human stories behind the global family planning movement.

    Family Planning Voices is a global storytelling initiative led by the Knowledge for Health (K4Health) Project and Family Planning 2020 (FP2020). FP Voices provides a platform for people who are passionate about family planning—and whose work or lives are affected by family planning—to tell their stories in their own words.

  • Blog post

    This post was originally published by the Health Communication Capacity Collaborative.

    Indvuna Michael Magongo

    According to Indvuna Michael Magongo, “The norm that a man should marry a very young girl because women age fast is no longer supported in our community.”

    “We as traditional leaders cannot watch young girls acquire HIV and be exposed to sexual abuse in the name of marriage.”

    Michael Magongo lives in a deeply rural village in Swaziland known as Bhadzeni Chiefdom. He, like the rest of the villagers, is a subsistence farmer growing corn and beans. He is married and, somewhat unusually, has only one wife.

  • Blog post

    This post was originally published by the Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs.

    Halima Shariff, Director, Advance Family Planning Tanzania, Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs, leads a panel with donors at the Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition reception at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in Seattle, Washington.

    Halima Shariff, Director, Advance Family Planning Tanzania, Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs, leads a panel with donors at the Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition reception at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in Seattle, Washington.

    Last week, along with several other colleagues from the Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs (CCP), I attended the 17th General Membership Meeting of the Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition (RHSC) in Seattle, Washington. In addition to collecting interviews for the Family Planning Voices initiative, which we co-lead with Family Planning 2020 (FP2020), we also had the opportunity to think about how communication fits within the complex world of supply chain management.

  • Blog post
    A young Burkinabe girl cares for her sick little brother in Koudougou, Burkina Faso.

    A young Burkinabe girl cares for her sick little brother in Koudougou, Burkina Faso. © 2012 Mohamad Syar/CCP, Courtesy of Photoshare

    The Family Planning Youth Ambassador Program in Burkina Faso focuses on raising awareness about family planning and reproductive health services among our country’s youth. We’ve engaged a lot of young people on the topic, but, as this testimonial from a young woman named Chantal shows, we were unintentionally leaving out many young people, namely married adolescents and out-of-school youth.

  • Blog post

    This post was originally published by UNFPA.

    Three women with their children in Far Western Nepal. All of the women were child brides.

    Three women with their children in Far Western Nepal. All of the women were child brides. © UNFPA Nepal/Santosh Chhetri

    BAITADI DISTRICT, Nepal – A girl’s astrological birth chart can hold the keys to her future in this remote corner of Far Western Nepal. And in the right hands, this is a good thing.

    When parents bring their daughter’s “cheena,” a chart made according to the Hindu astrological calendar, to 66-year-old astrologer and priest Dev Dutta Bhatta, he pays close attention to the birth year. If the girl is underage, he advocates for her parents to wait until she is an adult before arranging her marriage.

  • Blog post
    Young women, members of the HC3 Young Women’s Empowerment Program in Swaziland, participate in a Community Clean up Campaign they organized for their area.

    Young women, members of the HC3 Young Women’s Empowerment Program in Swaziland, participate in a Community Clean up Campaign they organized for their area. Photo: HC3 Swaziland

    Swaziland’s young, married women are a priority population to reach in order to end new HIV infections, given that the country has a generalized HIV epidemic. Swaziland has the highest HIV prevalence in the world, estimated at 26% among adults 15-49 and 31% among adults 18-49. Among young women, HIV prevalence ranges from 31% (women age 20-24) to 47% (25-29). HIV incidence is highest in women age 20-24 (4.2%) and 35-39 (4.2%).

  • Blog post
    Leyla is now 21, with a four-year-old son named Salim.

    Leyla is now 21, with a four-year-old son named Salim. Photo by Mina Kaci.

    She was like an earthquake: shaking everyone around her to the core, exposing their fault lines, damaging their usual demeanor, and challenging their beliefs in what should be the order of things. Unlike other huge natural phenomena like typhoons and hurricanes, earthquakes don’t have names—but this one did, because it was a positive earthquake. It was called Leyla.

    Leyla is the new normal for girls in Niger. A girl of 18 who spoke her mind, she was at the youth center to talk about how she benefited from an eight-month empowerment program for adolescent girls to reduce child marriage and teen pregnancy. Leyla had been chosen to speak because she had completed a program called Illimin, which in Houasa means “the knowledge.” Developed by UNFPA, Illimin has since become the flagship program of the government of Niger and is a successful model of what works in adolescent empowerment and child marriage and teen pregnancy reduction.