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POPULATION, FAMILY PLANNING, AND PROSPEROUS FAMILY NEWSLETTER. 1996 Mar; (2):8.The Office of the Minister for Population Affairs in mid-1996 planned to send nine family planning consultants to several countries in Asia and Africa to help make a success of the family planning programs in these countries. Population Affairs Minister, concurrently Chairman of the National Family Planning Coordinating Board (BKKBN), Haryono Suyono, when opening a training program for the family planning consultants in Jakarta, said that the training program was organized under a cooperation between Indonesia, the UN Family Planning Agency, and the US Government. The training was also a realization of South-South cooperation in family planning and population affairs agreed upon at the World Conference on Population and Development in Cairo in 1994. Nine of the participants were from Minister Suyono's office and the Association of Indonesian Family Planning. The training will last four months and the participants will be thoroughly trained in computer application, English, and how a consultant should work. The instructors came from Johns Hopkins University in the US, BKKBN consultants, the International Population and Family Planning Training Centre, and English teachers from the US. The BKKBN has in the last five years trained a total of 29 family planning consultants for assignment in 10 Asian and African countries, including Ethiopia, Tanzania, Bangladesh, Laos, Fiji, and Vietnam. In the meantime, the International Family Planning and Population Training Centre in Jakarta has since 1987 trained 2500 family planning officials from 87 countries in Asia and Africa. (full text modified)
WORLD WATCH. 1996 Jul-Aug; 9(4):2.Many countries will probably find it increasingly difficult to provide adequate food supplies to their populations as they continue to grow in the years ahead. The author explains that no country can develop and implement an effective food policy without first understanding what levels of crop production the world can reasonably sustain under real-life constraints. Cropland is shrinking in the face of urban sprawl; irrigation water is being diverted in ever greater quantities for industrial and municipal needs; fertilizer use in much of the world has reached a saturation point, beyond which extra doses do not increase the harvest; and the overall protein-producing efficiency of the world's agricultural system is declining, as newly prosperous Asian populations shift increasingly from direct grain consumption to meat. Demand also continues to grow by almost 90 million people annually. However, these and other constraints, such as the effects of soil erosion and air pollution on crop yields, are given little weight in the global grain production projections by the World Bank and the UN Food and Agriculture Organization. The economists who do the forecasting rely mostly upon an extrapolation of past production trends, inferring that world farmers will be able to sustain the rapid growth in the world grain harvest realized during 1960-90. Simple extrapolation from past trends never works over the long term. World Bank and FAO econometricians need to understand that food production has actually fallen over the past five years and incorporate that realization into their projections for the future. Failure to do so could lead to serious underinvestment in the areas of family planning and agricultural research.
AIDS WEEKLY PLUS. 1996 Jun 24 - Jul 1; 14.Cambodia's National AIDS Program (NAP) appealed for help to fight the spread of HIV. The appeal followed figures issued by the NAP that an estimated 120,000 Cambodians have been infected with HIV, according to Hor Bun Leng, NAP. In August 1995, the World Health Organization (WHO) revised the estimate of Cambodian HIV cases to 30,000 from the previous figure of 5000. The figure was revised upwards again in November 1995 to between 50,000 and 90,000. "The estimated figure for HIV-infected persons in 1996 is 120,000 cases and for people suffering from [advanced] AIDS ... we [have] estimate[d] a least 1000 cases," Hor Bun Leng said. "It's a very, very serious problem. We know how to handle it, how to get the information out to the people, and how to get success, but we need more money--we need funding from any donor agency which could help," he said. The NAP believes that 40,000 people or more could be AIDS patients by the turn of the century. "The WHO says we should spend at least $1 per person for the anti-AIDS campaign. In Thailand the government spent $80 million for a population of about 65 million people. But I have 10 million people and only between $200,000 and $300,000," Hor Bun Leng said. "[In 1995] we only heard about AIDS cases in Phnom Penh, but now we get reports from the provincial level throughout the country," he said. He said most provincial hospitals report new AIDS cases every month. "We don't know how to curb the HIV/AIDS problem. We need money for educational material, but we don't have enough financial resources." (full text)
QUINACRINE STERILIZATION NEWSLETTER. 1996 Jul; 1(1):1.The QS Newsletter is published to provide information on progress in development of the quinacrine pellet method of female sterilization. Specialists in the population field describe this method as the most important contraceptive to emerge since the introduction of the Pill. Yet it is largely unknown. There are several reasons for this unfortunate state of affairs. First, it involves a drug that has been in the public domain for decades. Because information on its use for sterilization has been published, it cannot be patented. So it is not an attractive investment for a pharmaceutical house. Secondly, neither the World Health Organization (WHO) nor the regulatory agency of any industrialized country has given the method its blessing. The estimates are that it would take about 8 years and $8 million to obtain such approval. Family Health International with support of the United States Agency for International Development (AID) has twice sought approval and twice given up the effort. While little is known of this method, even among population experts, its use continues to spread in developing countries. By now, over 100,000 women in various settings in 19 countries have accepted QS. Some of this experience is with formal government sanction and much is "off-label use." Quinacrine is an authorized drug for other purposes, including treatment of malaria, in all these countries. Physicians prescribing any off-label use of a drug are exposed to a degree of liability if there is a complication resulting from procedures, especially if there has been no recommendation by a "consensus meeting" of experts. Fortunately, complications with QS are very infrequent and increasing numbers of doctors and nongovernmental agencies are offering QS as one of their services. We believe that feminist organizations will have a particular interest in QS because it affords an additional option for women. Comments from our readers are always welcome. (full text)
In: AIDS in the world II: global dimensions, social roots, and responses. The Global AIDS Policy Coalition, edited by Jonathan M. Mann and Daniel J.M. Tarantola. New York, New York, Oxford University Press, 1996. 326-40.This book chapter examines the human rights aspects of responses to HIV/AIDS. The chapter opens by tracing the three phases which have characterized the relationship between human rights and HIV/AIDS prevention and control efforts (the proposed application of stringent public health measures, a recognition that discrimination against those with HIV/AIDS is counterproductive to prevention efforts, and the perspective that a lack of human rights increases vulnerability to infection). The discussion continues with an examination of the responses of nongovernmental organizations and the intergovernmental system to violations of human rights related to AIDS. A review of current controversies which have a human rights component includes HIV testing; the rights of migrants with HIV/AIDS; and human rights aspects of national laws, policies, and practices relating to AIDS. Finally, the results of a survey of national laws and practices are reported as showing that involuntary testing of "high-risk" individuals is still part of many AIDS prevention and control programs and that other policies which infringe on human rights are being enacted without legal justification. It is concluded that discrimination against people with HIV, people with AIDS, and people considered at high risk of acquiring the infection remains an important problem and that vigilance and enormous effort will be required to bring organizations at every level into compliance with international consensus on nondiscriminatory approaches to HIV/AIDS prevention and control.
In: AIDS in the world II: global dimensions, social roots, and responses. The Global AIDS Policy Coalition, edited by Jonathan M. Mann and Daniel J.M. Tarantola. New York, New York, Oxford University Press, 1996. 375-89.This book chapter reports on the current state of international funding for AIDS programs in developing countries. The chapter opens by discussing the development assistance provided by the developed countries which are members of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development and notes that development assistance is declining and that no published summaries on development assistance provide detailed information on the allocation of funds to HIV/AIDS programs. The data for this chapter, therefore, were drawn from an international financing survey conducted for this publication. The nature of the survey and complications involved in this type of data collection are then reviewed. Adequate survey responses were received from Australia, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Japan, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, the UK, and the US. The data are tabulated to display bilateral, multilateral, combined multi- and bilateral, and total funding. To reveal the trends exhibited by the major donors and to track funds donated to developing countries, tables present 1) total contributions to the Global AIDS Strategy for 1986-93 according to these funding channels, 2) multilateral contributions by country for 1987-93, 3) multi- and bilateral contributions by country for 1987-93, and 4) bilateral contributions for 1986-93. Pie charts show donor contributions by country and recipient countries. The increase in World Bank loans for HIV/AIDS prevention and care is covered as is the reduced supply of donors, increasing demand for development assistance, and evidence of donor fatigue. It is concluded that it will be critical for the UN AIDS Program to improve the financial accountability of both donor and recipient countries so that HIV/AIDS resources can be evaluated. Unless this occurs, such resources will likely continue to decline in proportion to needs.
In: AIDS in the world II: global dimensions, social roots, and responses. The Global AIDS Policy Coalition, edited by Jonathan M. Mann and Daniel J.M. Tarantola. New York, New York, Oxford University Press, 1996. 337-8.The Global AIDS Policy Coalition and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies have created an international working group to assess the human rights impact of policies, programs, and practices regarding human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). In mid-1995, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies and the Francis-Xavier Bagnoud Center for Health and Human Rights (Harvard University) published "AIDS, Health, and Human Rights," which includes an explanation of a methodology for balancing public health objectives with human rights norms. This brief article displays a schematic diagram in 2 x 2 format; human rights quality is on the vertical axis, while public health quality is on the horizontal axis. Both axes range from poor (negative) to excellent (positive). The quadrants, beginning in the upper right and moving vertically down, are labelled A and B, respectively; those beginning in the upper left and moving vertically down, are labelled C and D, respectively. The process involves four steps: 1) locate the proposed policy or program on the horizontal axis (public health) based entirely on health benefits, risks, and harms that will ensue; 2) locate the proposed policy or program on the vertical axis (human rights) based entirely on the potential benefits and burdens on human rights that will ensue; 3) determine an approach that best moves the policy or program into quadrant A, achieving the optimal balance between protection of public health and protection and promotion of human rights and dignity (minimizing the burdens on human rights); 4) review the approach, determined in step 3, searching for better alternative approaches.
Watertown, Massachusetts, Pathfinder International, 1996. 15 p.This booklet contains the speech made by Daniel E. Pellegrom, President of Pathfinder International, upon accepting the 1996 UN Population Award on behalf of Pathfinder International. In his speech, Pellegrom thanked Dr. Nafis Sadik, head of the UN Population Fund for her work, especially in achieving adoption of the Programme of Action of the 1994 International Conference on Population and Development. Pellegrom accepted the Population Award on behalf of Pathfinder's Board of Directors, staff, and founders. While expressing his pride in receiving the award, Pellegrom noted that opponents of reproductive health are working to undermine the efforts of family planners worldwide by reducing funding support from the US. Pellegrom noted that reproductive freedom is fundamental and that the demand for family planning (FP) services has never been higher. The lack of support for FP among US politicians demands that the political discussions be reshaped to include the voices of Americans who have benefitted from FP in their own lives and would not deny it to destitute people throughout the world.
New York, New York, AVSC International, 1996 Summer.  p.AVSC International works to ensure that men and women in more than 50 countries (including the US) have access to a full range of quality reproductive health care services. In the US, where AVSC is based, the health care delivery system is highly developed but is characterized by inequity in access both to quality reproductive health care services and to family planning (FP) information. The outcome of this inequity is that nearly 60% of all pregnancies which occur in the US are unintended; female sterilization, the most popular form of contraception, is offered at only 19% of all FP clinics; vasectomy is offered at only 17% of FP clinics; and most reproductive health care providers fail to offer the safest and most economical method of female sterilization. Therefore, AVSC's US program trains reproductive health care providers, distributes information for clients, conducts key research, and advocates policies to make reproductive health care services and information more widely available.
AIDS WEEKLY PLUS. 1996 Oct 28; 13.Recent reports regarding the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection epidemic in member countries (Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam) of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) task force, indicated that more than 1 million people in Indonesia and Vietnam may be infected with HIV by the turn of the century; the number of HIV-positive people in Southeast Asia would be greater than 2 million. All the risk factors for the spread of HIV are present in Indonesia: high-risk sexual behavior, poverty, high prevalence of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), an active tourist industry, increasing population mobility, and many seaports that are frequently visited by sailors from high-prevalence countries. Although Indonesia, with a population of 200 million, currently has 303 reported cases of HIV, this number could rise to 750,000 by the year 2000. According to the report of Professor Le Dien Hong of the National AIDS committee in Vietnam, the cumulative number of people with HIV in Vietnam will be 300,000 by the year 2000; this includes 20,000 persons living with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) and more than 15000 dead. 90,000 Filipinos may be HIV positive by 2000; Malaysia has 16,000 HIV positive persons; Singapore reported 477; and Brunei stated 350 foreigners and 8 Bruneians were positive.
Lancet. 1996 Nov 9; 348(9037):1305.Having beaten Thailand and China, Korea will become home to the new International Vaccine Institute (IVI), according to announcements made on October 28 at the UN. The IVI, which is expected to be built and operational by 1999, will be "dedicated to improving availability and use of high-quality vaccines in developing countries." Frank Hartvelt, director in charge of health programs at the UN, explained that the institute in Seoul will function in two ways. As a training center, it will provide ongoing education for immunization and public health officials from developing countries. The IVI will also dispatch its own experts to provide on-site training. Hartvelt hoped that quality control of vaccines as well as the introduction of some vaccines now seen only in wealthier countries (such as hepatitis B and influenza) would be some of the benefits of the project. Of additional interest were the behind-the-scenes international politics associated with the IVI. Officials in New York explained that Asia was chosen as the home of the institute because of the sheer number of children on that continent in need of immunization. Nonetheless, disappointment was heard from some members of the African delegations. Once Asia had got the nod, intense lobbying by several countries began. South Korea is believed to have been more than willing to come up with the US$40 million in start-up money and 30% of annual costs because of its longstanding gratitude to the UN, going all the way back to the Korean War. In return, Seoul was eager to play host (for the first time) to an international organization. If deemed successful, expansion of the IVI's role to Central and South America has already been discussed. (full text)
Washington, D.C., Population Action International, 1996 Sep. 13,  p. (Population Action International Occasional Paper No. 2)This paper presents recent trends in donor contributions for international population assistance. The 1994 International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) spurred a number of donor governments, including the US, to make major new commitments to fund population programs. This commitment is reflected in the large increase in spending between 1993 and 1994. However, recent US cuts to international population assistance have been a major blow to overall population aid levels. This diminished US role could undermine support for population aid in other industrialized countries. For now, the rapid expansion of bilateral programs in important donor countries like Germany, Japan, and the UK has offset the US cuts to some extent. Private foundations have also re-emerged as a significant funding source, while the regional development banks and the European Union (EU) remain largely untapped as sources of population funding. The downturn in overall development assistance has stalled the momentum developed from the ICPD, hindering the chances of reaching the ICPD funding goals. The extent to which each of the following countries provides international population assistance is described: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UK, and the US. The contributions of the EU, the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank, the Inter-American Development Bank, and private sources are also described.
In: African primary health care in times of economic turbulence, edited by J. Chabot, J.W. Harnmeijer, P.H. Streefland. Amsterdam, Netherlands, Royal Tropical Institute, 1995. 119-48.The authors review and summarize evidence from the recent literature on the current crisis in sub-Saharan Africa's health sector, especially in primary health care. Focus is given to the relationship between crises, the functioning of the health sector, and people's health status. Where possible, linkages are made with the structural adjustment policies (SAP) being pursued in the respective countries. A theoretical framework for the discussion is first presented. Policy options for governments to respond to the health sector crisis and their potential effectiveness are then reviewed in the third section. The last section of the paper presents a discussion of the role which international organizations and donor agencies have played in the health sector in recent years and some of the dilemmas they face.
WOMENS HEALTH ISSUES. 1996 Sep-Oct; 6(5):307.AVSC International, in cooperation with the Ministry of Health of Ghana and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), has accomplished the following in Ghana: 1) renovation of surgical health facilities, including those for gynecologic surgery; 2) organization of infection prevention workshops regarding the transmission of hepatitis, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), and other sexually transmitted diseases (STDs); 3) training of health care providers in family planning counseling, with emphasis on the needs and desires of the client; and 4) organization of a national workshop (September 1995) on quality of care. AVSC does not promote abortion anywhere in the world; however, the organization is concerned with the health of women who have unsafe abortions and those who have difficulty obtaining contraceptive services. AVSC's approach, in general, is one of cooperation with in-country institutions, other organizations, and individuals.
JICA NEWSLETTER. 1996 Nov; 6(4):2-6.Motivated by the belief that education has been central to Japan's economic success, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) promotes universal access to quality basic education. In developing countries, school children rarely learn science through experiments. A new JICA training course, the Science Experiment in Primary Education, involved teacher trainers from Bangladesh, Myanmar, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. Physics, chemistry, biology, geology, and astronomy experiments that require simple, inexpensive materials were taught. Another JICA project in Satkhira, Bangladesh, sought to raise the economic status of women enrolled in a dressmaking program through a year-long evening literacy class at three sites. Elementary school diplomas (available with proof to a local teacher of basic literacy and minimal arithmetic skills) are required in Bangladesh to apply for nongovernmental organization-initiated vocational schools and loans to start businesses in areas such as dressmaking, agriculture, and livestock raising. By late 1993, the female literacy program had expanded to 18 villages.
JICA NEWSLETTER. 1996 Nov; 6(4):7.Girls Education Project, a two-year program sponsored by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), seeks to address the educational needs of Mayan girls in rural Guatemala. The program is being implemented under the framework of the Japan-US Common Agenda for Cooperation in Global Perspectives. Preliminary fieldwork revealed the importance of ensuring that entire communities, including teachers and parents, appreciate the human right of rural girls to a basic education. The project team will conduct three-day workshops in each of the four pilot states in 1997 to discuss teaching methods, materials, and curricula to promote girls' participation and improve their achievement levels. Also planned is a three-day national seminar involving governmental officials and representatives from the public and private sectors, nongovernmental organizations, professional groups, universities, and ethnic and cultural groups. The bilingual/bicultural method selected for the intervention seeks to implement basic education for Mayan girls in both Spanish and the four main Mayan languages. Another focus is to encourage the students to maintain pride in their cultural heritage.
AIDS / STD HEALTH PROMOTION EXCHANGE. 1996; (4):8-9.The European Commission (EC) supports programs using radio to inform and educate about HIV and AIDS in developing countries, particularly with regard to illiterate or rural populations. In 1992, in Comoros (where 80% of adults and 65% of persons aged 15-25 listen to radio and there is no national television and only one printed medium--a French magazine), as part of a National AIDS Programme initiative aimed at mobilizing youth and women leaders, two journalists of the national radio channel produced an EC-supported series of 20 radio programs that were broadcast twice weekly every other week as part of the popular program "Sante" (Health). A series of 11 programs were broadcast in 1994-95 by Radio Comoros and by two private stations that were popular with youth. Surveys showed the following: 1) the popular shows were the main source of information on HIV/AIDS and were particularly successful in rural communities when broadcast in the local language; 2) the majority of villagers wanted this and other health information to continue; and 3) public information regarding sexuality was accepted by a large majority. The radio series caused Islamic religious leaders to discuss HIV prevention and condoms. An EC-supported project in Morocco occurred in 1993. The 3-month national information campaign about HIV/AIDS covered myths and rumors, infection risks, prevention measures, the disease and women and youth, the epidemic's socioeconomic impact, the role of nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), and the role of the media. A 1-hour program in Arabic was broadcast twice a week for 24 weeks, 12 30-minute programs were broadcast in three Berber dialects, and several short spots were aired daily. The program format included presentations and discussions by health staff, psychologists, sociologists, and NGO staff; listener participation was allowed. 1000 men and 700 women were surveyed using a questionnaire. Roadside interviews were conducted in some cities. These showed that the information was understood. Many listeners criticized the lack of information on television and wanted more information broadcast.
[Prevention of female genital mutilation in Sweden] Forebyggande av kvinnlig konsstympning v Sverige.
NORDISK MEDICIN. 1996 Dec; 111(10):358-60.In Goteborg, Sweden, a 3-year project was carried out among immigrant women about female genital mutilation, which involved discussion, information, and training to improve the situation of the women afflicted. It is estimated that there are around 115 million such women in Africa alone. In Europe there an estimated 50,000 young women who come from areas where female genital mutilation is practiced. In Sweden there are 16,000 such women and in the Goteborg area there are 2000-3000 who are at risk of being subjected to this practice. There are no exact figures about the number of those who have undergone this operation. The procedure includes Sunna mutilation and Pharaonic mutilation. The consequences are hemorrhage, shock, damage to the urethra, sepsis, the risk of HIV infection because of scarification, urinary retention, psychological trauma, development of fistula, dyspareunia, and infertility. In recent years there has been more open discussion about this practice, which is rooted in the male domination of women in Arab and African countries. International organizations have also addressed the issue in order to prevent it: the Inter Africa Committee on Traditional Practices Affecting the Health of Mothers and Children, the World Health Organization, UNICEF, and UNESCO. The first European conference on the subject was held in 1992 in London, and preventive strategies were developed. In 1982 Sweden had already adopted a law banning the practice. In 1993 the Goteborg immigration authority initiated a 3-year project about the practice, stressing collaboration with the immigrant women and their families as well as the personnel in health facilities, social agencies, schools, and immigrant processing centers. Two working groups were formed: one for health personnel including some Somali women and one for social agency personnel. In February, 1995, the guidelines for information transferral for health personnel were presented, which are now used locally.
In: Making her rights a reality. Women's human rights and development, edited by Gillian Moon. Fitzroy, Australia, Community Aid Abroad, 1996. 74-83.It is more effective to conduct advocacy based on an understanding that the poor are people whose rights have been denied than simply to provide services or welfare. The UN has provided the human rights framework upon which such advocacy efforts can be based and has, through its international meetings, set the standards for the rights of women. While the development rhetoric of UN agencies acknowledges gender issues, practical implementation of gender-sensitive projects at the local level is hard to achieve. In this regard, the UN Development Program's gender development index and gender empowerment measure are useful, and the UN places important peer pressure on nations. However, the UN lacks political will and its administration is a bureaucratic disaster. Thus, preventable tragedies continue to happen because of unclear and weak mandates, and most of the post-Cold War peace-keeping interventions have failed because of the actions of important member countries. The UN has also failed to address massive structural equity gaps among nations and has allowed the World Bank (WB) and International Monetary Fund (IMF) to implement devastating structural adjustment programs. The policies of the WB, IMF, and World Trade Organization (WTO) must be changed so that these agencies cease undermining efforts to improve human rights at the policy level, and the UN must be reformed. The WB responds to public pressure, and similar pressure must be applied to the IMF and WTO. The UN needs a multinational, rapid deployment, highly-trained peacekeeping force, and we need an international judicial process to deter war crimes. Nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) face the challenge of presenting arguments for policy change in an authoritative manner. NGOs must also develop a constituency that will push within developed countries for such changes.
Family Health International 25th Anniversary Symposium: Improving Reproductive Health Worldwide, November 23, 1996, Research Triangle Park, NC.
Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, FHI, 1996. , 22 p.This report of the 25th Anniversary Symposium of Family Health International (FHI) opens with an overview that summarizes three presentations: 1) a description of FHI's organization presented by its President; 2) a commentary on FHI's first 25 years and future challenges using Thailand as a model of a developing country that achieved strong economic development, slower population growth, and lower mortality during this period; and 3) a sketch of the US Agency for International Development's involvement in population programs. The second part of the report reproduces three more detailed reports on the operation of FHI. The first detailed essay relates the history of FHI's efforts in the area of contraceptive research and defines four distinct time periods: the early 1970s when FHI collected data, the later 1970s to early 1980s when FHI initiated strategies to improve research, the mid-1980s when FHI began to focus on achieving regulatory approval of new products, and the 1990s when research has expanded into new areas. The second essay covers FHI's research into ways to prevent transmission of sexually transmitted diseases and HIV/AIDS, including the evaluation of barrier methods and vaccine trials. The third essay describes how women's perspectives are incorporated into research following the principles that women's rights are human rights and that women's welfare is an end in itself. The report ends with a summary of the closing comments of the FHI's Chief Executive Officer who noted that FHI has grown tremendously in 25 years but that the agency continues its mandate to collect first-class data for use by policy-makers while pursuing new activities.
Watertown, Massachusetts, Pathfinder International, 1996. 24 p.Pathfinder International seeks to build capacity to create and improve access to the fullest possible range of quality information and services to enable individuals and couples to make reproductive health choices. The agency's annual report for 1996 opens with a message from its president that characterizes 1996 as an astonishing year because the US government instituted an 85% budget cut in international family planning (FP) programs and because Pathfinder received the UN Population Award. The US cuts have occurred at a time when governments of other industrialized countries have increased support for international FP programs and when demand for FP has grown. The UN award afforded Pathfinder a platform for advocating replacing US support to reproductive health services. The next section highlights Pathfinder's receipt of the UN award and reproduces letters of congratulations from US Senators. This is followed by a chronology of Pathfinder's first 40 years of operation. The report continues with a description of programs and activities that seek improvement in quality of reproductive health care, collaboration with other organizations, increased access to services, and integration of reproductive health services and also place a focus on youth. The report ends with a list of foundations that provided support during 1996, of individual donors, and of the members of the Board of Directors as well as a financial statement. A free copy of this report can be ordered from Carrie Hubbell, Technical Communications Unit, 9 Galen Street, Suite 217, Watertown, Massachusetts 02172, USA.
[Unpublished] .  p.This document relays 10 lessons learned in providing communication technical assistance in programs designed to eradicate female genital mutilation (FGM). 1) The community must identify FGM as an issue they are interested in working on, and the local implementing agency must request technical assistance. 2) Agencies providing technical assistance to FGM eradication programs must avoid high visibility. 3) Technical assistance is most appropriately given by local staff living and working in the particular country. 4) International agencies should strengthen the skill base of their local counterparts so the local groups can acquire the necessary communication skills to work toward eradication. 5) The local implementing organization must conduct research to guide the intervention and the target communities must be involved in designing the interventions. 6) Interventions must be very local in nature and design. 7) Workshops provide good settings for providing technical assistance and training. 8) Local-level project staff need assistance in skills training and individual-level support to deal with their sense that they are betraying their own culture. 9) Skills training helps local staff work through individual behavior change issues in order to help communities adopt behavior changes. 10) The process of behavior change takes time and requires continuity. Donors and local implementing agencies must understand that it may take as long as a generation to eradicate FGM.
Bethesda, Maryland, Sisterhood is Global Institute, 1996. , xiv, 168 p.This manual presents a multidimensional framework that allows grassroots Muslim women from various backgrounds to examine the relationship between their basic human rights as inscribed in major international documents and their culture. The introduction contains the manual's objective and background, the major international sources of women's rights, the major premises upon which the manual is based, the theoretical framework of the communication model (involving a communicator, an audience, a medium, and a message), the general structure of the model, and a note to facilitators. The next section presents the learning exercises that can be used by facilitators and participants to discuss women's rights 1) within the family; 2) to autonomy in family planning decisions; 3) to bodily integrity; 4) to subsistence; 5) to education and learning; 6) to employment and fair compensation; 7) to privacy, religious beliefs, and free expression; 8) during times of conflict; and 9) to political participation. Section 3 contains a workshop and facilitator evaluation form. Appendices contain auxiliary material such as relevant religious passages, descriptions of the first heroines of Islam, samples of Arabic proverbs concerning women, the text of international human rights instruments, and a list of various human rights and women's organizations in selected Muslim societies. The manual ends with an annotated bibliography.
Highlights from the Third Annual Inter-Agency Working Group on FGM Meeting, Cairo, Egypt, November, 1996.
[Unpublished] 1996. 13 p.In November 1996, more than 34 representatives from 20 organizations attended the Third Annual Inter-Agency Working Group meeting on female genital mutilation (FGM) in Cairo, Egypt. After opening remarks by the Chairperson of the Task Force on FGM in Egypt and the Egyptian Under Secretary of the Ministry of Health and Population, other discussions placed FGM in the larger context of women's human rights, reviewed the background of the Global Action Against FGM Project and the goals of the Inter-Agency Working Group, and provided an overview of the activities of RAINBO (Research, Action, and Information Network for Bodily Integrity of Women). A report was then given of a research workshop organized by RAINBO and the Egyptian Task Force on FGM immediately prior to the Working Group meeting. It was noted that data from the recent Demographic and Health Survey revealed an FGM prevalence rate of 97% in Egypt, and areas requiring more research were highlighted. Discussion following this presentation included mention of qualitative methods used in a recent study in Sierra Leone and recent research in the Sudan that led to recommended intervention strategies. During the second day of the Working Group meeting, participants provided a preview of the work of the Egyptian Task Force Against FGM; a description of RAINBO's effort to develop training of trainers reproductive health and FGM materials; and summaries of the work of nongovernmental organizations, private foundations, UN agencies, and bilateral donors. This meeting report ends with a list of participants.
Inter-Agency Working Group on Participation meetings hosted by UNDP, September 17-18, 1996, New York City, NY.
Arlington, Virginia, Partnership for Child Health Care, Basic Support for Institutionalizing Child Survival [BASICS], 1996.  p. (Report; USAID Contract No. HRN-00-93-00031-00)This report pertains to BASICS participation at a meeting of the Interagency Learning Group on Participation (IGP) hosted by the UN Development Program in New York City, on September 17-18, 1996. Participants included UNICEF, the World Bank, Overseas Development Assistance, Asian Development Bank, USAID, and other international organizations. This was the first time that BASICS was included in the meetings to share their community participatory experiences and to explore opportunities for collaboration. The meeting was the third of its kind. IGP is a voluntary group without a budget who represent multilateral, bilateral, and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs). The IGP is concerned with institutional change and creating awareness of the value of participatory approaches; training and country-level capacity building; information and dissemination; and monitoring and evaluation. The UNDP administrator emphasized the need to focus on more information disclosure for donors and NGOs, the context of increasing decentralization, legal frameworks for the empowerment of women, and the importance of democratization. Most of the presentations focused on the internal institutional constraints to promoting and implementing participation in the field. The logical framework approach does not lend itself to participatory development. UNICEF ran workshops in 3 countries on how to use a more participatory manner in country programs, but after 6 months trainees still had difficulty with applications. Internal policies and procedures, lack of tools for monitoring, a need to change staff attitudes, specific country context, and institutional capacity to identify and work with the right partners were all problems. An NGO in India, cautioned against too much participation. Smaller plenary discussions focused on dealing with conflict, outcomes, redistribution of power, the public good, and village logbooks.