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Emergency and conflict situations

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Emergency and conflict situations

Demobilized soldiers in Ethiopia receive condoms, and education on their correct and consistent use, as part of UNFPA support after devastating armed conflict and drought. The men are also trained as health educators to prevent HIV/AIDS and counsel others upon their return home.

All STIs, including HIV, spread faster when communities are in crisis.

In times of violent conflict and natural disasters, instability breaks down family life and social norms, and health facilities are often damaged or destroyed.

At the same time, by making bad situations even worse, HIV/AIDS poses a potential threat to human security.

UNFPA provides reproductive health equipment and supplies—including condoms— to help fulfill the Minimal Initial Services Package (MISP) required in an emergency.

Later, when the crisis subsides, UNFPA supports longer-term efforts to reduce HIV infection among still-vulnerable populations. Rapid needs assessments, counselling and training are also part of the UNFPA response.

  • Along with direct support to maternal health clinics and hospitals in Afghanistan, UNFPA is advocating the inclusion of reproductive health concerns such as HIV prevention for young people and genderbased violence throughout refugee care and peace-building efforts.

  • Adolescent girls in Angola, where war has displaced many and increased risks for all, are the focus of a joint UNICEF and UNFPA project with a local NGO. To reduce the risk of HIV infection and increase access to youth-friendly reproductive health services, the project provides training to health workers and teachers, trains peer educators and counsellors, promotes life-skills education in and out of schools, and disseminates information to raise awareness among policymakers and religious and community leaders.

  • To address the problem of rape against women, a joint project between the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, UNFPA and UNICEF continues to strengthen reproductive health services and assistance to victims of sexual violence in post-conflict situations. In place since 1998, the project provides psychological and medical support to victims of sexual violence.

  • To reach street children in Ethiopia, teams of trained and uniformed distribution agents went door-to-door with leaflets, condoms and contraceptives in an activity of Ethiopian Aid, an NGO that provides services from job training to health care, with a full range of reproductive health services.

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