Basis for Action

The 1994 International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) set forth a number of challenges. In particular, Chapter 7, Reproductive Rights and Reproductive Health, of the ICPD Programme of Action provides a sound rationale for action and outlines objectives and steps to be taken. One of the ICPD’s main goals is to ensure that reproductive and sexual health services are universally available and of sufficient quality to meet the rising demand for them.

Providing high quality services is a goal that demands improved staff training and supervision, and regular monitoring of their interactions with clients. Improving the scope and quality of care will also mean additional investments in infrastructure and personnel.

Partnerships with civil society are also fundamental to the ultimate success of initiatives aimed at improving the design and delivery of reproductive health information and services. NGOs and community-based women’s organizations have become particularly important forces in designing, researching and testing new methods of service delivery. Such grassroots groups have also been instrumental in urging the expansion of national programmes.

In evaluating current programmes, feedback from clients indicate they want:

  • Friendly and courteous service
  • Confidentiality and privacy
  • Attention to their specific needs and concerns
  • Complete and accurate information on family planning methods and contraceptives
  • Technical competence of staff
  • Uninterrupted access to care and supplies
  • Fairness in provision of services regardless of age, marital status, sex, class or ethnicity.

What's NEW

Planning activities are underway in the six pilot countries -- India, Kyrgyzstan, Mauritania, Nepal, Peru and Tanzania.

Launched in 2001, with funding from the United Nations Foundation (UNF), Stronger Voices builds on the respective strengths and experiences of four UN partners: UNFPA, ILO-STEP, WHO and UNICEF.

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