Press Release

E2A hosts series of events to advance programs for first-time parents

Aiming to ensure wide and equitable access to family planning and reproductive health services among underserved populations around the world, E2A’s portfolio of activities focused on one particularly underserved population—first-time parents*—has been quickly growing. Just last week, E2A held a series of events to advance the ability of adolescent and youth sexual and reproductive health and rights programs to reach first-time parents with services that would support them to space their future pregnancies in a way that ensures the healthiest outcomes for themselves, their children, and their families.

On October 27 and 28, E2A hosted high-level consultative meetings that convened a small group of thought leaders on adolescent and youth sexual and reproductive health and rights to review experience to date and shape a programmatic framework for responding to the specific needs of first-time parents. During the consultations, experts emphasized both the common struggles first-time parents face as well as the diversity of the population. They concluded that while any framework will have to be flexible for adaptation to working with different groups of first-time parents, it must include some essential components. The experts agreed that any framework must support integrated programs that address maternal, newborn, and child health and sexual and reproductive health; focus on gender inequalities that limit women’s reproductive rights, drive intimate partner violence, and govern parenting roles and responsibilities; and be applied to intervene with first-time parents, their partners, families, and communities to shift norms and create an enabling environment. E2A will continue to work on developing the framework with this expert group.

Following the consultations, on October 29, E2A and the Youth Health and Rights Coalition co-hosted a dialogue that included a report out on conclusions of the high-level consultations and two presentations from programs in Uganda and India that have successfully included elements focused on first-time parents. The dialogue is the first in a series that E2A and the Youth Health and Rights Coalition will host to advance programming for first-time parents.

Following the events, our senior youth advisor, Regina Benevides, wrote a blog post about those events and why first-time parents have become an E2A focus.

For more information about any of these events, or our growing portfolio of youth-focused programs, please contact Regina Benevides at rbenevides@e2aproject.org.

*E2A broadly defines first-time parents as young married/in-union women under the age of 25 and their partners who are pregnant or already have one child.