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Courageous girls change attitudes about FGM in Ethiopia

Genet Girma, 31, was a trailblazer in her community. Fifteen years ago, she ran away from home when she learned that her mother planned to have her undergo female genital mutilation (FGM). As in many other communities...

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Sheltering teen mums: Emergency home offers crisis care in Thailand

BANGKOK, Thailand – Mon* began dating her boyfriend when she was 14 years old. They met online.  A few months in, "he wanted to have sex," she recalled. "He did not use any protection. I was scared at first, but he said...

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Dispatches from the road: UNFPA Goodwill Ambassador Ashley Judd on the horrors facing Rohingya refugees

In mid-February, humanitarian advocate, writer and actor Ashley Judd travelled to Cox’s Bazar in Bangladesh to meet Rohingya refugees who have escaped violence in Myanmar’s Rakhine State. There, she visited UNFPA-...

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Mayon volcano eruption displaces pregnant women and new mothers in Philippines

“I was washing clothes near my house when I heard the eruption from Mayon Volcano,” Jiassal Balatinsayo told UNFPA. Eight months pregnant and residing just over 6 km from the volcano erupting in the village of Santa...

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Escaping violence, refugee mothers in Angola find relief in safe childbirth

Towards the end of Yvonne Mboi’s pregnancy, she recalled, “I realized I was too big. I was afraid.” These concerns loomed large after her harrowing flight from conflict in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

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Madres adolescentes muestran la importancia de la educación sexual y los servicios de salud sexual

“Quedé embarazada a los 14 años de edad”, Angie contó al UNFPA. Ahora, a los 19, ella vive con su hijo en un asentamiento humano situado en Villa El Salvador, uno de los distritos más poblados de Lima, la capital del...

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Mozambique programme empowers girls to fight gender inequality, child marriage

“We are equal to boys and can also contribute to society,” said 17-year-old Lidia Suale Saide. Lidia knows what it means to stand up for these beliefs. One year ago, she refused her mother’s attempt to marry her off.

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Mothers too young: Inequality fuels adolescent pregnancies in Thailand

“I had plans for my life, but since I got pregnant I had to plan for my life in a different way,” said Fern*, 18. “If I knew this was going to happen, I would have just focused on my studies. I would not have bothered...

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Displaced by crisis, South Sudan midwifery students focus on saving mothers

Nyomon Lilian will never forget the day she decided to become a midwife. A few years ago, in her hometown of Kajo Keji, in South Sudan’s Equatoria region, she watched as her neighbour bled out after giving birth.

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