Canada announces funding for projects to advance sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR), and gender equality internationally


Canada has announced over $200 million for 15 projects under the SheSOARS (Strengthening Opportunities in Accessing Reproductive Services) initiative in more than 18 countries, with a focus on Africa. These projects are being implemented through global, multilateral, and Canadian civil society organisations and are part of Canada’s 10-year Commitment to Global Health and Rights. Canada also announced over $30 million for two new projects that address unpaid care work, to unlock women’s ability to participate more fully in the economy, in education, and in public life. They are part of Canada’s landmark, $100-million commitment to address unpaid and paid care work issues.

Global Program to End Child Marriage


The project supports UNFPA-UNICEF’s Global Programme to End Child Marriage, a multi-donor joint United Nations program aimed at eliminating child marriage in 12 countries in Africa and South Asia where the rates of child marriage are among the highest: Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana, India, Mozambique, Nepal, Niger, Sierra Leone, Uganda, Yemen and Zambia. The Global Programme aims to enable adolescent girls, including the most marginalized, to fully enjoy their childhood, free from the risk of marriage, so they can experience healthier, safer and more empowered life transitions, including being able to make choices about their education, sexuality, relationships, marriage and childbearing.

Uplift Her – Supporting adolescent girls' SRHR, nutrition and economic empowerment in Ethiopia
CARE Canada

The project will: improve gender and adolescent responsive services in sexual and reproductive health and nutrition; increase equitable participation of vulnerable adolescents in diversified, climate resilient economic activities, and in good health and nutrition practices; and improve decision-making of young people, especially out-of-school adolescent girls, on their own health and well-being.

Gender Innovation and Regional Learning (GIRL)
World Bank

This project will empower adolescent girls by addressing discriminatory norms and attitudes that contribute to gender inequalities, like child, early and forced marriage, early school drop-out and issues surrounding SRHR in Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Benin, Cote d’Ivoire, Guinea and Cameroon.

Todas Avante (All Ahead)
Plan International

This project aims to increase the realization of SRHR for diverse adolescent girls and young women (AGYW), strengthen the provision of responsive, integrated and innovative adolescent sexual reproductive health and protection services, and support AGYW by building health, community and school infrastructure. The project will also support improved accountability structures, by capacity of civil society organisations, youth-led organizations, internally displaced groups, people living with disabilities and LGBTQIA+ communities to advocate for AGYWs SRHR.

Girls teenagers health in Mali
The Canadian Red Cross Society

This project aims to respond to the needs of adolescents that the health system does not properly address. It will help to eliminate barriers to adolescents' access to quality services, while building their capacity for SRHR decision-making.

Improved Health of Women and Adolescent Girls in Situations of Vulnerability
PAHO (Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Honduras, Peru)

This project will address barriers to SRHR by empowering women and girls to advocate for their rights, while strengthening the resilience of health systems in Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Honduras, Guyana, and Peru.

DANBÉ: Communities committed to the dignity of Malian women
Consortium International Medical Corps and Santé monde

This project will fill SRHR gaps for women and adolescent girls in the Sikasso, San and Segou regions of Mali, by strengthening the capacity of health facilities through regular training and coaching of providers, provision of medical and non-medical equipment, and improved and more integrated management of SRHR and sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) services.

Advancing Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights
MSI – Global (multi country)

This project will provide access to comprehensive sexual and reproductive health services to women, adolescent girls, people living in extreme poverty, people living with disabilities and conflict, and displacement-affected populations in Africa and Asia.

Increasing Sexual and Reproductive Autonomy
Ipas – Global (Bolivia, Indonesia, Nigeria)

This project will increase the sexual and reproductive autonomy of women and girls in Bolivia, Indonesia and Nigeria by increasing their access to integrated and comprehensive sexual and reproductive health services, and enhancing their ability to make decisions about their own sexual and reproductive health.

Preventing and Combating Sexual or Sexist Violence Against Children in Burkina Faso
International Bureau for Children’s Rights (IBCR)

This project will increase coordination between and performance of key actors in the child protection system (military, policy, social workers, health care providers, education and justice sectors) and increase the capacity of communities (community protection networks, civil society, and children) to prevent and respond to sexual and sexist violence.

Promoting the Sexual and Reproductive Rights of Adolescents in Honduras (DEREJUV)

This project supports the Government of Honduras Plan for the Prevention of Adolescent Pregnancies by strengthening national policies and expanding access to sexual and reproductive health services for Honduran youth.

Breaking Barriers to Girls’ Education in Niger
World Food Programme

This holistic project addresses education, nutrition, global health and SRHR in the Diffa, Tahoua et Tillabéry regions of Niger. Working in conflict-affected areas, the project will establish a food safety net in schools to reduce the number of girls and boys dropping out. The project aims to promote the integration of reproductive health education for adolescents and youth into the secondary school curricula, as well as to provide SRHR services and support inside and near schools.

Enabling Justice for Victims/Survivors of Sexual and Gender-Based Violence
UNDP Sri Lanka

This project supports communities across Sri Lanka to help address SGBV through justice sector reform, improved services for women and girls, and a reduction in harmful social norms.

Right to abortion in DRC
Ipas RDC

This project will empower women and girls bodily by expanding avenues of access to sexual and reproductive health services and information and safe abortion care. The project will work with government and community partners to translate the DRC's favorable legal and policy framework into improved access to quality comprehensive abortion care, safe contraception, and care related to SGBV.

Girls Not Brides: The Global Partnership to End Child Marriage
Girls Not Brides

Canada’s institutional support to Girls Not Brides contributes to the implementation of the organisation’s mandate of ending child, early and forced marriage (CEFM). Girls Not Brides coordinates and supports a global network of 1,600 civil society organisations in 100 countries throughout Africa, Asia, the Middle East, Europe and the Americas, in an effort to ensure global, national and local momentum, leverage progress and share best practices, advance policies and programs, and engage in global, regional, and local advocacy on CEFM.

Projects that support paid and unpaid care work issues:

Scaling Care Innovations in Africa
Global Affairs Canada (GAC) and International Development Research Centre (IDRC)
$25,500,000 ($20,500,000 from GAC and $5,000,000 from IDRC) (sub-Saharan Africa)

This project is a five-year partnership between GAC and IDRC that aims to advance gender equality in Sub-Saharan Africa by scaling tested policy and program innovations that foster the recognition, reduction, and redistribution of women’s unpaid care work. The project will work directly with women leaders, local experts, and local institutions to scale up solutions that will be a good fit for their own contexts.

Time to Care, Kenya
Oxfam Canada

This project is aimed at changing gender norms and practices, as well as care work policies and legislation. Oxfam will work alongside local women’s rights and civil society organisations, as well as with men and boys as allies to collaborate with policy makers, unions, traditional leaders, and educators.

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