Safeguard Young People – Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRHR)

Project completed

The UNFPA Safeguard Young People Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights/HIV (SRHR) programme will contribute to the reduction of HIV infections and improved sexual and reproductive health status of young women and men aged 10 to 24 in 8 Southern African countries1. UNFPA will scale up SRHR/HIV prevention models in order to equip young people with knowledge, skills and values to protect themselves from HIV infections and capacitate member states to improve the legislative environment to address young people’s health issues.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Southern African Development Community (SADC)
Health
Reproductive health & rights
Health systems strengthening
Infectious desease
01.08.2013 - 31.01.2017
CHF 8'575'000
Background

Although HIV incidence has gone down, the region still accounts for 75% of global infections among young people. Only 40% of young men and 38% of young women aged 15-24 have comprehensive knowledge of HIV and its transmission. Early childbearing, lack of access to adequate maternal health services all contribute to high numbers of maternal deaths among young women in the region. Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRHR) programmes are estimated at reaching only 45-50% of eligible young people. Laws, systems and services related to SRHR are inadequately implemented despite the number of commitments expressed by governments in international and regional human rights and SRHR instruments.

Objectives

Reduced HIV infections and improved sexual and reproductive health of young people aged 10 to 24 in 8 Southern African countries.( Zambia, Swaziland, Malawi, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Namibia, Botswana, Lesotho).

Target groups

Adolescents and young people (10-24) nationally in the 8 SADC countries. Young people most at risk of HIV including young sex workers, those living in HIV hotspot communities or where teenage pregnancy or early marriage is high. Secondary target group are: teachers, youth workers, service providers, health service providers, young peer educators, traditional initiation instructors, chiefs policymakers, law enforcement agents, and parents.

Medium-term outcomes

  • Improved policy and legal environment for addressing young people’s issues, policies and programmes at the regional (SADC) national and sub-national levels.
  • Increased knowledge and skills of young women and men towards adoption of protective sexual behaviours.
  • Scaled up youth friendly and integrated SRHR and HIV Services for adolescents and young people through both static and outreach services.
  • Strengthened leadership and participation by young people in programme planning, implementation and evaluation as well as in national and regional development processes.
  • Strengthened coordination, documentation and dissemination of strategic information, lessons learned and best practices at the national and regional levels
  • Results

    Results from previous phases:  

  • UNFPA spearheaded an Africa regional advocacy initiative strengthening youth development and SRHR leadership of the African Union Commission (AUC), UN Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) and the Regional Economic Commissions (RECs). This led to the development of the Continental Policy on SRHR and the Maputo Plan of Action in 2006.
  • In Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe, UNFPA partnered with the Ministries of Health to implement youth friendly sexual health/HIV services. The results showed a significant increase in the use of services by young people. The World Health Organisation (WHO) confirmed the UNFPA implemented youth friendly services as effective strategy that can be scaled up without further research.
  • An adolescent Girls’ Empowerment Project originally implemented in Liberia, Sierra Leone in West Africa, and Ethiopia and Malawi succeeded in delaying early marriage of project participants, increased the period of schooling, improved life skills and confidence and girls now access health services.

  • Directorate/federal office responsible SDC
    Credit area Development cooperation
    Project partners Contract partner
    Private sector
    United Nations Organization (UNO)
    • Foreign private sector South/East
    • United Nations Population Fund


    Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF   8'575'000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF   8'419'866
    Project phases Phase 2 01.02.2017 - 31.12.2019   (Current phase)

    Phase 1 01.08.2013 - 31.01.2017   (Completed)