While the past 30 years have seen huge strides in life expectancy, fertility and mortality, gender inequality still negatively impacts women and girls – and by extension their families and communities – in a multitude of ways, including their vulnerability to health problems, access to treatments, access to resources, and the response of health systems.
These inequalities include: policies and laws that hinder women’s and girls’ access to family planning/reproductive health information and services; ministries and health services that fail to address gender barriers and violence against women; and systemic provider attitudes and poor practices that lead to poor quality of service.
Gender is a critical cross-cutting strategy for advancing the reproductive health and family planning needs of women and girls. E2A ensures there is systematic and consistent reflection of a gender lens in all of its technical assistance activities. This is with a view to ensure the promotion of gender-equitable approaches for the development and strengthening of family planning and reproductive health information and service-delivery models that will result in improved access and utilization of family planning services by women and girls.
At the country level, E2A seeks to support national and local stakeholders to create an environment where women and girls can fulfill their reproductive aspirations by reducing gender inequalities in health care access; increasing their participation in decision making; engaging men to improve gender equality and reduce barriers for women and girls to access health services; addressing social and cultural determinants of health; and preventing gender‐based violence.
E2A and its partners have the capacity to support national and local stakeholders to create an environment where women and girls can fulfill their reproductive aspirations by:
- Advancing the understanding of stakeholders about the different family planning and reproductive health needs of women and girls at different points in the reproductive health lifecycle
- Adopting practices that reduce gender inequalities and increase health care access for women and girls
- Increasing women’s participation in decision makingEngaging men to improve gender equality and facilitate reduction in gender-based violence and improve utilization of family planning/reproductive health services
- Building local capacity for the assessment, documentation, introduction, and scale-up of gender-equitable practices within national programs