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Health

Mental health, menstruation, sexual and reproductive health and more about our bodies from the voices of women and girls worldwide.

Neil Datta: Anti-Gender and Anti-Rights Movements in Europe

Understanding the anti-gender and anti-rights movements in Europe is essential to defending and safeguarding human rights and democracy in Europe and across the world – and for pushing for more progressive change for gender equality, human rights and in essence sustainability. 

My guest is Neil Datta, Founder and Executive Director of European Parliamentary Forum for Sexual and Reproductive Rights. Neil has over fifteen years’ experience in the field of political involvement in population and development. Throughout this period he has conducted in-depth research on anti-choice activity in Europe, publishing a report in 2018 that continues to receive worldwide media attention.

Our conversation is really about the anti-gender and anti-rights movements in Europe, what they look like, where the funding for them comes from, their growth and development in recent years. We also speak about what we can do to defend gender equality and sexual and reproductive health and rights.

If you’re interested in reading the reports published by the European Parliamentary Forum for Sexual and Reproductive Rights go to epfweb.org.

Why We Must Harness the Collective Power of Mothers

Five years ago, after giving birth to my daughter, I decided to commit the rest of my life to ensuring that every woman has access to world-class maternal care.

I suffered from postpartum hemorrhage—excessive bleeding due to obstetric trauma. Postpartum hemorrhage can be a life-threatening complication and is the leading cause of maternal death globally.

In impoverished areas, the rate of maternal mortality and morbidity remains staggeringly high. The good news? Most maternal deaths are entirely preventable, as are disabling childbirth injuries like fistula.

Your action today can change lives. Read the post Harnessing the Collective Power of Mothers, published on Girls’ Globe. Then, brighten a woman’s world by making a year-end gift to Fistula Foundation, an organization that believes that no woman should suffer a life of misery and isolation simply for trying to bring a child into the world.

Cover photo for: Why are women still dying in childbirth in Nepal? A mother recovers with her newborn, who was delivered under the supervision of trained health professionals at Sri Krishna Medical College and Hospital, a public health facility. Institutional births are one of the government of India's key strategies to reduce infant and maternal mortality, and to improve the overall health of the mother and child. An average of 7,000 births take place at Sri Krishna Medical College and Hospital each year.

Why do Women Still Die Giving Birth in Nepal?

Maternal mortality is one of the leading causes of death for women of reproductive age in Nepal, most of which occur due to direct obstetric complications at the time of birth and during the postnatal period.

The overwhelming majority of maternal deaths occur in rural, poverty ridden areas where healthcare services are often inadequate or inaccessible. Even in places with access to health services, there is a severe shortage of trained medical staff.

Learn more about why women are still dying in Nepal and what can be done to prevent these deaths.

A picture of a small girl riding on a burned skeleton of a motorcycle in Myanmar.

Children of Myanmar – A Traumatized Generation

In the midst of ashes, formerly her home and village, this wee girl attempts to normalize her world with a game of make-believe motorcycle ride. The scene, surreal as it is, is but one example of the destruction and horror inflicted on Burmese people –

Photo of period blood in underwear with the words c'est la vie. Cover photo for gender-inclusive language around periods post.

We Need to Talk About Periods in a More Inclusive Way

The concepts of gender and sexuality are evolving at a decent pace to make the world more gender-fluid. Yet, the topic of ‘menstruation’ is still fraught with cissexism – or the discrimination against transgender and gender-nonconforming individuals.

The language we use is important.

VOTE graphic. Cover photo for Your Words and Your Vote

Your Words and Your Vote

Over the 48 hours since the news broke about the U.S. Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade, I have cried, screamed, talked with many people, considered the various actions I can now take, and then began taking them. This post is one of those actions.

She Survived Cancer—and Then Had to Battle Iatrogenic Fistula

Use your voice to support women who have survived the unthinkable. Esther is a 41-year-old mother of five from the town of Bariadi, in the Simiyu region of Tanzania. In 2017, she experienced a life-changing event. She began suffering from excruciating pain in her stomach

Cover photo: Bans off our Bodies. Protest against abortion ban in US

Bans Off Our Bodies – A Poem for Women’s Liberation

They seek to curtail our reproductive freedom,
strip pregnant women of reproductive agency,
thwart pro-choice legislation,
shut down abortion clinics,
try to convince us that our bodies are not ours to keep.

That our personhood and bodily autonomy are conditional.

Cover Image for post Period Poverty in Pandemics

Why We Need an Integrated Response to Period Poverty in Pandemics

When household incomes are constricted, often luxury items, and even period products, are deprioritised. This impacts an individual’s ability to attain menstrual health – and the risk of experiencing period poverty. So, how is COVID-19 impacting period poverty? What can be done to address period poverty during this pandemic?

Woman protesting the war in Ukraine

In the War in Ukraine Women and Children Pay the Heaviest Price

A few weeks ago, a harrowing image of a pregnant woman injured in the Russian bombing of a Ukrainian maternity and children’s hospital was doing rounds in the news and social media. Widely-circulated pictures showed the woman stroking her bloodied lower abdomen as rescuers carried her through

Mental health, menstruation, sexual and reproductive health and more about our bodies from the voices of women and girls worldwide.

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