Improving contraceptive choices and bodily autonomy for women and girls with disabilities | Blogs

Sightsavers is also the disability partner in the West and Central Africa consortium led by MSI Reproductive Choices as part of the Women’s Integrated Sexual Health (WISH) ProgramUK Aid’s flagship SRHR programme.

To contribute to the agenda of “leaving no one behind,” the WISH program has been reaching out to women with disabilities whose needs were previously largely unmet by providing family planning and sexual and reproductive health services. Through this program, we provide expertise to consortium members to improve disability inclusive practices with the goal of:

  • Strengthen the knowledge and options that people with disabilities have in terms of the provision of sexual and reproductive health services, as well as increase community support for people with disabilities to exercise their sexual and reproductive health rights.
  • Strengthen government policies, domestic financing and accountability incorporating disability inclusion to create a stronger enabling environment for family planning and sexual and reproductive health and rights that is accessible and inclusive for all.
  • Improve access to the provision of sexual and reproductive health services for clients with all types of disabilities.

We are also working with partners to close existing gaps. For example, Sightsavers developed a training package to train SRHR healthcare providers and other stakeholders, such as the Ministry of Health, on how to seek informed consent and protect people with disabilities from marginalized communities.

“Improving access to sexual and reproductive health and rights for women with disabilities has been at the core of the WISH programme, and all consortium partners have made enormous strides towards achieving this goal. “MSI is proud to see how disability inclusion is now a key part of our programming.”
Caroline Guinard, FCDO Program Director
MSI Playback Options

The sexual and reproductive health and rights of people with disabilities – particularly women and girls with disabilities – have been ignored for too long. If we really want to leave no one behind, now is the time to act. It is vital that we:

  1. Invest adequate resources
  2. Trigger quality evidence
  3. Ensure that people with disabilities are significantly included in the health sector and within their communities
  4. Empower people with disabilities make informed decisions about their bodies and their future

All of this requires a collective effort, on World Contraception Day and every other day.

Authors

Andrea Pregel is Sightsavers’ global technical lead for inclusive health, and Amalie Quevedo He is a Sightsavers technical advisor for inclusive sexual and reproductive health and rights.

Let’s work together! If you would like to find out more about Sightsavers’ inclusive SRHR work or would like to explore opportunities for collaboration, please contact Andrea Pregel on [email protected]

We will be happy to hear your thoughts

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