...so goes an old common blessing given to an Indian bride, talks of gender equality notwithstanding. While the small family norm slogan of 'hum do, hamare do' (we two, ours two) has rubbed in well the penchant for begetting at least one son has not waned.
Many modern Indian women find their womanhood incomplete without begetting a son. I know of several highly educated and professionally qualified young Indian women who heaved a sigh of relief and smug satisfaction on having a boy as their first or second born. A complete Indian family is envisaged as one with two kids- at least one of who ought be a son.
STEVIE EMILIA, THE JAKARTA POST Jakarta / Tue, September 29, 2020
Abortion – safe or unsafe, legal or illegal – has existed throughout history. Yet, it continues to be the most sensitive and controversial issue in reproductive health.
The WHO has disclosed that an average of 73.3 million – safe and unsafe – abortions took place worldwide per year between 2015 and 2019, with the rate of abortions being higher in developing regions than in developed ones.
Time to act
Laws abound to end discrimination against women, but a political will to implement them is a must
Oct 24, 2018
Nepal ratified the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (Cedaw) in 1991 as part of its commitment to uphold and protect gender equality. On Tuesday, seven years after its last review, the country reported its progress to the 71st session of the Cedaw Committee in Geneva. Countries are obligated to report every four years.
Nepal has been making steady progress, both economically and socially, since it transitioned into a federal democratic republic after the promulgation of the 2015 constitution. The current constitution ensures that basic health care services are a fundamental right, and addresses women and girls’ right to safe motherhood and reproductive health through numerous national laws, policies and programmes.
by International Campaign for Women's Right to Safe Abortion
March 22, 2018
On International Women’s Day, the Asian-Pacific Resource and Research Centre for Women (ARROW) launched the online version of their publication #OurStoriesOurselves!, which contains stories of women’s experiences of pregnancy, abortion, the consequences of sex, child marriage and more. In addition to the stories of women themselves, the webpage includes podcasts, a photo gallery and images of hand-written journals by women that form the basis of the publication. Here is an excerpt from one of those stories from a Moroccan woman:
Five years ago, Fatima (then aged 16 years) was raped in her home by her uncle. Initially, she kept the incident to herself. “Shocked and afraid, I could not talk about it to my family or anyone I knew,” she narrated.
Yes! SheDecides: Affirming women’s rights to their own body
Friday March 2, 2018
March 2 — A group of stakeholders and global representatives came together today to express their support for SheDecides — a movement that promotes, provides, protects and enhances the fundamental rights of every girl and woman to freely decide about their sexual lives.
The discussion, organised in conjunction with SheDecides’ first anniversary, saw participations of regional non-profit group Asian-Pacific Resource and Research Centre for Women (Arrow) and representatives from Belgium, the Netherlands, Denmark and Finland, among others.
The Asian-Pacific Resource and Research Centre for Women (ARROW) has been working since 1993 to champion women’s sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR). They try to achieve this through interlinked strategies of information and communications for change, monitoring and research for evidence-based advocacy, strengthening partnerships for advocacy and organisational development.
Their January 2017 e-newsletter, Issue 1, highlights five short videos on SRHR issues in Cambodia, China, India, Nepal, and Philippines. We highlight two of them here, which are on safe abortion in Cambodia and Nepal, both countries that have legalised early abortions, highlighting the fact that many women are not yet aware of this. You can view the whole newsletter here. You can watch the two videos at the links below:
Safe Abortion Services in Cambodia
The Reproductive Health Association of Cambodia shows that while access to safe abortion services is legal in the country, there is still a need to raise awareness on this to ensure that women have access to sexual and reproductive health and rights.
Safe Abortion with Quality of Care, Nepal
The Beyond Beijing Committee in Nepal’s video shows that while access to safe abortion services is legal in the country, there is still a need to raise awareness on this to ensure that women have access to sexual and reproductive health and rights.
Publication of the video coincides with a report they have just published, entitled Report on status of abortion stigma in Nepal.pdf. Based on the finding of the report we had very good policy dialogue at the central level with the government, non -government and with Ipas-Nepal.
Shanta Laxmi Shrestha, lead researcher on the Beyond Beijing Committee report, is going to speak on “How SDGs can be translated into actions, especially to assure SRHR in Nepal + situation of abortion stigma” on 16 January 2017 in the national consultation on “Achieving universal access to sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights: Leaving no one behind” .