This article analyses the particular relevance of gender for debates about global health and the role for international human rights law in supporting improved health outcomes during public health emergencies. Looking specifically at the recent Ebola and Zika outbreaks, what we find particularly troubling in both cases is the paucity of engagement with human rights language and the diverse backgrounds of women in these locations of crisis, when women-specific advice was being issued.
This briefing note summarises the rationale behind a symposium held in South Africa, which objectives were: to provide a quick overview of gender-sensitive practices which have been effective in preventing and coping with HIV/AIDS in communities in the aftermath of violent conflict; to identify strategies that empower men and women recently affected by violent conflict to engage more effectively in HIV/AIDS prevention; and to explore the practical implications of HIV/AIDS prevention for building sustainable peace.
Girls’ and women’s health is in transition and, although some aspects of it have improved substantially in the past few decades, there are still important unmet needs. Population ageing and transformations in the social determinants of health have increased the coexistence of disease burdens related to reproductive health, nutrition, and infections, and the emerging epidemic of chronic and non-communicable diseases (NCDs). Simultaneously, worldwide priorities in women’s health have themselves been changing from a narrow focus on maternal and child health to the broader framework of sexual and reproductive health and to the encompassing concept of women’s health, which is founded on a life-course approach.
This expanded vision incorporates health challenges that affect women beyond their reproductive years and those that they share with men, but with manifestations and results that affect women disproportionally owing to biological, gender, and other social determinants.
The creation of women and girls safe spaces (WGSS) has emerged as a key strategy for the protection and empowerment of women and girls affected by the Syrian crisis. This document provides an overview of what safe spaces are and what key principles should be followed when establishing such spaces in humanitarian and post-crisis contexts. This guidance is based on the experiences of UNFPA and its partners in Jordan, Lebanon, Iraq, Syria and Turkey. It also refers to experiences documented by the Gender-Based Violence (GBV) coordination mechanisms in Jordan and Lebanon.The key objectives of a safe space are to provide an area where women and girls can socialize and re-build their social networks; acquire contextually relevant skills and access multi-sectorial GBV response services and information on issues relating to women’s rights, health, and services. In the Syrian context, women have become more isolated as a consequence of the crisis but evidence suggests that the establishment of women- and/or girl-only spaces helps to reduce risks and prevent further harm during acute emergency responses.
This study contributes to what is currently known about the experiences of girls in fighting forces as distinct from those of boys. It is meant to assist policymakers in developing policies and programs to help protect and empower girls in situations of armed conflict and postwar reconstruction. Within the context of Northern Uganda, Sierra Leone and Mozambique girls in the fighting forces have suffered major human rights violations, especially gender-based violence. The rights of these girls are under threat from their own governments, armed opposition forces, and, occasionally, by members of their communities and families. At times, girls are discriminated against by local groups and officials, governments and international bodies that are unwilling to recognise their presence, needs and rights during conflict, post-conflict, demobilisation and social reintegration.
Yet, within the fighting forces, girls carry out a number of diverse roles, including as fighters.
In this paper we review the evidence on the impact of large shocks, such as drought, on child and adult health, with particular emphasis on Zimbabwe and Ethiopia. Our focus is on the impact of shocks on long-term outcomes, and we ask whether there are intrahousehold differences in these effects.
The evidence suggests substantial fluctuations in body weight and growth retardation in response to shocks. While there appears to be no differential impact between boys and girls, adult women are often worse affected by these shocks. For children, there is no full recovery from these losses, affecting adult health and education outcomes, as well as lifetime earnings. For adults, there is no evidence of persistent effects from transitory shocks in our data.
Initial high human development index scores and per capita income have a strong impact on the outcomes of aid to the health and education sectors.An increase in the share of the government budget allocated to education and health improves overall human development.
Aid appears to be effective in reducing maternal mortality as well as the gender gap in youth literacy, regardless of initial conditions.
Women play a crucial role in providing care and support, and also in the use and management of the water resources and sanitation at the household level. In addition, voluntary community care work is done mostly by women, rather than men, thus as caregivers women experience further pressures brought on by the spread of HIV/AIDS in rural communities. While HIV/AIDS is not a direct water related disease, it is important to recognise that people living with this disease are much more vulnerable to infections or diseases such as diarrhoea, cholera and other diseases linked to poor water supply and sanitation, thus it is essential that such diseases are prevented.
Having acknowledged this fact, it is important to note that there is still a low level of participation of women, particularly in decision-making and as a result, women still suffer the consequence of poor water and sanitary facilities,
Shunned by their communities and unable to work, female survivors of Ebola in Guinea face profound hardship as they try to care for their families.
The principle aim of this research was to investigate the roles of gender and religion in child-centred disaster risk reduction (DRR). Moreover, and through participatory research, informal conversations and direct advocacy, the project team hoped to build knowledge and awareness of child-centred DRR.
The research was also designed tov alidate findings from previous research by the wider project team and to provide a body of empirical evidence in support of child-centred DRR and the Children in a Changing Climate programme.
This story of change pulls out the key findings and recommendations from EMERGE case study 6, which focuses on the One Man Can initiative in South Africa. The initiative works through community mobilisation to question gender norms and improve knowledge and practices around sexual and reproductive health.