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Summary
IDRC, in partnership with Global Affairs Canada, is investing CAD5.76 million through a grant to improve adolescent reproductive health in Senegal. 

This five-year initiative (2020–2025) aims to improve adolescent reproductive health in Senegal by addressing the interactions between reproductive health and gender-based violence (GBV) through a cohort of participatory action research and youth projects. 

By generating evidence and supporting powerful leadership responses from youth, policymakers and communities, this partnership is helping youth, especially adolescent girls, to effectively exercise and advocate for their rights to access and enjoy reproductive health, including prevention and protection from GBV.

Our cohort of projects 

To achieve this, the initiative is based on two complementary components:

  • a cohort of five participatory action research projects to generate evidence and inform policy and practice to address the interactions between poor adolescent reproductive health and GBV. These five projects reinforce and complement each other by developing participatory, solution-based research that prioritizes multi-sectoral partnership and youth engagement. 

  • a cohort of nine projects aimed at empowering youth and youth organizations to use evidence and strengthen their leadership to help address the interactions between adolescent reproductive health and GBV, and to take ownership of the program’s research findings to inform their actions and advocacy.

Focus of the research 

Themes covered by the initiative focus on the links between adolescent reproductive health and child marriage, female genital mutilation, rape, limited access to appropriate health information and services, and lack of community and intersectoral dialogue. The projects focus in particular on the most vulnerable adolescent girls (e.g., adolescents with disabilities or in physical or mental distress) to help empower them.

Aims of the partnership 

The knowledge generated by this cohort of projects will contribute to giving adolescent girls better access to reproductive health services that are inclusive and transformative of gender relations. While each project builds on the impact that the research process provides, having a cohort of interrelated projects will generate significant momentum.

The aim is to achieve important breakthroughs, allowing program policy and implementation to evolve in a manner that addresses the unmet needs of adolescent girls. Strengthening adolescent girls’ leadership and advocacy, as well as raising awareness and mobilizing their supporters, constitute the foundation for leveraging adolescent girls’ influence on reducing GBV. This will also enable them to effectively exercise their reproductive health rights.

 

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Socios

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