Unite For Body Rights (UFBR)

In many countries where the SRHR Alliance is active, traditional and cultural practices, beliefs, taboos and negative attitudes limit the ability of young people and women to make safe and informed decisions on sexual and reproductive health and rights. Moreover, there are further barriers that limit them from utilising sexual and reproductive health services.

The lack of education and freedom to make individual choices about sexuality has serious implications on the health and wellbeing of young people, women and marginalised groups. They are frequently unable to effectively negotiate safe sex, leaving them vulnerable to unwanted pregnancy, sexual transmitted infections and AIDS. They are also more vulnerable to gender-based violence. Early marriage and teenage pregnancies are of great concern. Moreover, women run a higher risk of maternal morbidity and mortality due to unsafe abortions and limited availability of and access to maternal health services (antenatal care, safe delivery services). Teenage pregnancy is also one of the contributing factors to high school dropout rates for girls, limiting their chances of fulfilling their full potential.

continue to objectives

Overall objective

Improve the sexual and reproductive health and rights of 2.5 million people, especially young people, women and marginalised groups.

Specific objectives

  1. Increased use of contraceptives, also among young people;
  2. Increased use and quality of mother- and childcare services;
  3. Improved quality and range of sexuality education, in and out of school;
  4. Reduce (sexual) violence against women;
  5. Increased acceptance of different sexual orientations.
continue to approach

The Unite For Body Rights (UFBR) programme is implemented by the Dutch SRHR Alliance in nine countries to strengthen Southern Civil Society organisations.

The programme supports partner organisations in Asia (Bangladesh, India, Indonesia and Pakistan) and Africa (Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Uganda and Tanzania) in improving the sexual and reproductive health and rights of young people, women and marginalized groups.  The five-year programme combines three intervention strategies to promote SRHR for all. These are:

  1. Increasing quality and access to SRHR education;
  2. Increasing quality and use of SRH services;
  3. Creating an enabling environment for SRHR, within and outside communities and through lobby and advocacy.

Simavi’s activities

The activities focus on individual, organizational and institutional empowerment combined with realization of conducive and enabling conditions and policies for the promotion and protection of SRHR. Together with 17 local partners, Simavi implements the UFBR programme in Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, Bangladesh and India. The goal is to raise awareness on SRHR among the target groups, strengthen the provision of quality public and private SRHR services and create an enabling environment at community, local and national level. The activities include (but are not limited to):

  • Comprehensive Sexuality Education in schools and SRHR information sessions in the communities;
  • Community dialogue and awareness sessions on SRHR (involving community and religious leaders, community health workers, men, elders, local decision makers);
  • Training health workers on youth friendly services and setting up youth corners in clinics;
  • Train Peer Educators on SRHR issues;
  • Setting up women groups, youth groups and pregnant women groups in the community;
  • Advocacy towards local, national and international decision makers to increase political commitments to SRHR and improve SRHR services in communities.

FIETS principles are implemented to ensure sustainable change. Therefore Simavi focuses on capacity building of local civil society organisations, which work towards ownership and commitment of partners and target groups. Through the involvement of community and religious leaders, opinion makers and advocacy towards decision makers, all parties work together towards an environment in which all women and men, girls and boys, and marginalized groups are able to make safe and informed decisions on sexual and reproductive health and rights irrespective of their ethnic, cultural and religious background, age, gender and sexual orientation.

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The UFBR programme is implemented in line with a results framework that tracks progress made against key outcome and output indicators.

Several key outcome and output indicators that Simavi tracks with its partners were:

Empowered communities

  • 2,307,605 people (target: 1,055,454) directly reached with education on SRHR;
  • 7,085,595 people (target: 13,593,148) reached on SRHR through mass media (e.g. TV, social media and our partner’s radio programme).

Enabling environment

  • 483 (target: 390) representatives from partner organisations attending advocacy meetings;
  • 133 people (target: 101) memberships in partners countries.

You can find a complete programme results overview of 2015 here.

Situation Approach Result

Programme information

  • Simavi Budget

    € 7.1 million

  • Overal Budget

    € 44 million

  • 5 years

  • Location

    India: Jharkhand, Bihar, Odisha (states);
    Bangladesh: Bogra, Mymensingh, Noakhali, Pabna, Poba (Rajshahi), Chittagong, Gazipur, Rajostoli, Kawkhali, Moddhonagar, Durgapur (upazilla’s);
    Kenya: Western Kenya (Kisii, Migori, Homabay, Kisumu, Siaya, Kakamega, Busia and Bungoma (counties);
    Malawi: Chikhwawa and Mangochi (districts);
    Tanzania: Singida and Same (districts).

  • Target groups

    Young people (10-24) and women living in marginalised communities and rural areas. As a secondary group, Simavi targets community leaders, ministries and local health workers, national and international policymakers.

  • Alliance partners

    SRHR Alliance: Simavi, Rutgers WPF, AMREF Flying Doctors, Dance4Life and CHOICE.

  • Implementing partners

    Bangladesh: PSTC, FPAB, CHC, RHSTEP, DSK;
    Malawi: YONECO, CAVWOC;
    Tanzania: HAPA, MDM.

  • Donors

    Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs

  • Role of Simavi

    Implementing partner in five countries. Simavi uses its expertise to increase access to services and to create a community-enabling environment.

Further reading

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