By: Yousra Yusuf, Women Deliver
In India, like many places throughout the world, girls and women experience gender-based discrimination in areas such as education, job opportunities and even marriage options. Rural girls face an even greater degree of gender inequality. Shakti, a girl-child empowerment program implemented by Aangan, has been working to empower girls 12 to 18 years of age. In 2011, about 2500 girls from different communities participated in this program. Read more...
February 18th, 2013
By: Yousra Yusuf, Women Deliver
September 10th, 2012
By: Yousra Yusuf, Women Deliver
Global maternal mortality rates may be on the decline, but mothers in India continue to die from preventable causes at alarming rates. In 2010, 56,000 deaths were reported throughout the country, with one in every 140 women dying from pregnancy or childbirth-related causes. Through a conditional cash transfer program, Janani Suraksha Yojana (JSY), the Indian government is working to ensure that no woman dies while giving life. Read more...
May 14th, 2012
By: Lindsay Menard-Freeman, Women Deliver
If you brave the helter-skelter road out of the capital city of the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh—where rickshaws, motorcycles, and oversize trucks compete with cows for two narrow lanes—then turn onto the dirt road between the rice fields, you will find something remarkable in the quiet village of Devpuri. Despite India’s dire maternal and newborn health record (each year, 78,000 women die giving birth and a million babies don’t survive their first month), mothers and newborns are surviving. Read more...
April 26th, 2012
By: Chaitra Arjunpuri; Originally posted on Al Jazeera
I am one of those unfortunate Hindu women whose hard lot is to suffer the unnameable miseries entailed by the custom of early marriage. This wicked practice of child marriage has destroyed the happiness of my life. It comes between me and the things which I prize above all others - study and mental cultivation. Without the least fault of mine, I am doomed to seclusion; every aspiration of mine to rise above my ignorant sisters is looked down upon with suspicion and is interpreted in the most uncharitable manner..."
- Extract from a letter written by a woman named Rukhmabai to The Times of India on June 26, 1885, reproduced in Child Marriage in India: Socio-legal and Human Rights Dimensions, by Jaya Sagade (Oxford University Press, 2005). Read more...
March 17th, 2012
I celebrated the 101st International Women's Day in the halls of the United Nations last week. I followed Twitter, and shared blogs and news stories that collectively called we women to action. When I take a step back, as I did last week, I'm reminded that the "women's rights are human rights" movement is still very much a process in many parts of the world. One thing that I have noticed through filming women around the world is that most of us girls and women are inspired by one another's stories.
Stories create hope. Everywhere I travel, I listen to stories that blow my mind with the courage, personal sacrifices and perseverance of so many women. Read more...
February 23rd, 2012
October 17th, 2011
By: Madeline Taskier, Strategic Partnerships Associate at Women Deliver
At only 12 years old, Kavita* stopped attending school to help her family with housework. By 15, she was married to a man from a village in the Ajmer District of Rajasthan, a western state in India. In this new village, she taught young children during the day and attended classes at night to improve her literacy. It was through this local literacy program, Kavita was approached by leaders of The Barefoot College; a new initiative trying to develop a cohort of female solar engineers. Read more...
July 11th, 2011
By: Mariko Rasmussen, Communications Specialist at Women Deliver
In Bihar, one of India’s least developed and most populous states, men and women seeking information on contraceptives have faced barriers of all kinds: cultural, financial and socio-economic. The need for action is apparent: 58 percent of the population is under age 25, the median age of marriage for women from traditional villages is 15, and 28 percent of women give birth to their first child before the age of 18. In response, Pathfinder’s Promoting Change in Reproductive Behavior (PRACHAR) Project has been working since 2001 to transform attitudes and behaviors around contraceptive use and demand, with the aim of delaying and spacing pregnancies among adolescents and newlywed couples. Read more...
February 7th, 2011
By: Rati Bishnoi, Special Projects Intern
More women die giving birth in India than in any other country in the world—an unfortunate distinction caused largely by the high number of deliveries in rural areas that occur without the support of trained health care providers. One Indian nonprofit, however, is saving the lives of women by using innovative practices to provide mothers around-the-clock delivery and newborn care and working to incorporate these interventions into the government-run rural health care services system. Read more...
December 13th, 2010
By: Madeline Taskier, Partnership Coordinator at Women Deliver
Roughly 78,000 women in India die during pregnancy and childbirth per year, some of the world’s largest numbers of country-level maternal deaths. Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra are the two largest and most populous states in India, generating a large percentage of the maternal mortality and morbidity in the country. In 2008, PATH aimed to address these disparities with the Sure Start Project, a holistic approach to maternal health systems strengthening. Read more...
November 15th, 2010
By: Mariko Rasmussen, Program Assistant at Women Deliver
Tamil Nadu lies in the southernmost part of the Indian Peninsula. The state faces major challenges in improving and increasing access to health care services, but they are making significant strides. The Government of Tamil Nadu developed a Health Policy in 2003 with a focus on the health of low-income communities and families. The Tamil Nadu Health Systems Project supports this strategy through several interventions, especially those aimed at reducing infant and maternal mortality. The World Bank recently provided more funds, in addition to the original financing in 2004, to further improve health services quality and access while supporting state-wide management systems implementation. Read more...
October 14th, 2010
From contraceptive use in Cambodia and Central America and issues of access in Kenya and around the globe, to abortion trends and practices in India and Nigeria and early marriage and reproductive health outcomes in India, to youth policy and services from the WHO European Region - click through to find a variety of new research studies and publications.
August 30th, 2010
By: Kate Mitchell from the Maternal Health Task Force; orginally posted at the MHTF Blog
Today (August 30, 2010) marked the first day of the Global Maternal Health Conference in Delhi. Throughout the day, the nearly 700 conference participants–made up of maternal health researchers, programmers, advocates, social entrepreneurs, policymakers, and young professionals–shared a number of insights, lessons learned, recommendations and innovative ideas for improving the health of women around the world.
Click through to read brief insights from the Inaugural Ceremony speeches...
August 30th, 2010
From August 30 to September 1, more than 600 maternal health experts will gather in Delhi, India, for the Global Maternal Health Conference 2010, the first international technical conference devoted exclusively to maternal health. Hosted by the Maternal Health Task Force at EngenderHealth and the Public Health Foundation of India, the conference aims to increase consensus and coordination around the evidence, programs, and advocacy needed to advance maternal health. According to latest estimates, more than 342,000 women worldwide die due to preventable pregnancy or childbirth complications every year.