PESHAWAR: An initiative to increase access of Afghan and women and girls of temporarily displaced persons (TDPs) and host communities to quality Sexual Reproductive Health services to prevent unplanned pregnancies and decrease deliveries mortality rate was launched here on Monday.
The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) in collaboration with the Government of Pakistan and financial support of Australia has launched the ‘Sexual and Reproductive Health’ programme for womenfolk.
The speakers said that UNFPA was providing life-saving services to ensure safe childbirth but shortage of supplies and trained midwives continued to threaten the lives of mothers and children in camps and host communities.
They said the programme was aimed at increasing access of Afghan and women and girls of TDPs and host communities to quality Sexual Reproductive Health services and help decrease deaths of infants and mother during deliveries.
Chief Commissioner, Commissionerate for Afghan Refugees (CAR) Muhammad Saleem Khan, said the programme was aimed at providing quality health services to 360,000 individuals. He said CAR would facilitate and provide strategic oversight on this initiative to ensure maximum benefits at the end of the three years project.
The official stressed concentrated efforts by all the implementing partners and stakeholders to achieve the target of the project.
Australia’s Ambassador for Women and Girls Dr Sharman Stone said the project objective was to empower women and reduce maternal and child mortality rate. “By helping women to stay healthy, we help them participate equally in society, education and the economy,” she noted.
UNFPA Representative in Pakistan, Dr Hassan Mohtashami said the agency was committed to protecting those who were in constant transit.
“Our humanitarian programmes are protecting women, girls and young people in 60 countries. In Pakistan, we are providing assistance in major crises and disaster-hit areas since 2010,” he added.
High Commissioner of Australia Margaret Adamson called for collective efforts by the governments and civil society to contribute to international and national efforts to improve the safety of women and girls and create opportunities for them so that they can live with dignity and respect.