Threat of dzud undermines women’s needs, health
10 March 2017
  • Harsh winter conditions in Mongolia threatened to reach ‘dzud’ levels – the term for heavy snowfall and extreme temperatures that cause mass losses in livestock. © UNFPA Mongolia/Bayartsogt Shagdarsuren

  • These situations are economically devastating for pastoral and nomadic communities. An estimated 165,000 people have been affected by the difficult conditions. © UNFPA Mongolia/Bayartsogt Shagdarsuren

  • With families struggling to cope, women’s health and hygiene needs have taken a back seat. Some report rationing sanitary napkins to be able to afford food and fuel. © UNFPA Mongolia/Bayartsogt Shagdarsuren

  • With roads blocked by snow, access to sexual and reproductive health care, including family planning supplies, has been limited. © UNFPA Mongolia/Bayartsogt Shagdarsuren

  • There are also fears that worsening economic pressures, coupled with high alcohol consumption, could raise the risk of gender-based violence. © UNFPA Mongolia/Bayartsogt Shagdarsuren

  • UNFPA has procured contraceptives to improve availability of family planning supplies. © UNFPA Mongolia/Bayartsogt Shagdarsuren

  • UNFPA also distributed dignity kits, which include hygiene supplies for women and girls, as well as flashlights and whistles to safely move about at night. © UNFPA Mongolia/Bayartsogt Shagdarsuren

  • And many women are undaunted by these challenges. It is not the first time they have faced such circumstances. “This is all part of the herder’s life,” they told UNFPA. © UNFPA Mongolia/Bayartsogt Shagdarsuren

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