AMANITARE, the African Partnership for Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights of Women and Girls recently paid homage to two exceptional African organisations taking significant strides forward in their work to promote and protect the Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights of young women and girls in Africa.
At a recent AMANITARE skills development workshop held in Abuja, Nigeria, the AMANITARE 2002 Annual Award and the AMANITARE 2002 Resource Centre Grant were presented to the Edna Adan Ismail Maternity Hospital in Somaliland and Journalists Against Aids (JAAIDS) in Nigeria, respectively.
The recipient of the AMANITARE 2002 Annual Award, Mrs.Edna Adan Ismail and the Edna Adan Maternity Hospital, have revealed the pioneering spirit that lies at the heart of translating African women’s health rights into effective reality. In 1998, Edna Adan Ismail, an internationally renowned health professional and former WHO representative, returned to her country of birth to work with the local community and open the first not-for-profit private maternity hospital in Somaliland. Working against the backdrop of a country emerging from prolonged civil war, where health service infrastructures are almost non-existent, Edna Adan Ismail personally contributed US$ 350,000 to the development of this much-needed maternity hospital in the capital city of Hergeisa. The Edna Adan Maternity Hospital provides antenatal care and supervised childbirth by trained midwives and doctors, acting also as an educational and training centre for a new generation of nurses and midwives. The hospital also hopes to un-dertake much-needed research on the reproductive health status of Somali women.
As a long-term activist for women’s rights, Edna Adan Ismail has continued her campaign to end the practice of female genital mutilation, primarily through the counselling of families attending the hospital. In Somaliland, infibulation (the severest form of female genital mutilation) affects almost 100% of women.
Mrs Edna Adan Ismail expressed her sincere appreciation for AMANI-TARE’s recognition. She said, “A hospital has a hundred and one needs and your donation will certainly be put to good use”. AMANITARE is very proud to be supporting this brave and important initiative.
The AMANITARE 2002 Resource Centre Grant was awarded to JAAIDS (Journalists Against Aids). JAAIDS is a well-structured and focused media-based NGO in Nigeria. Launched in May 2001, JAAIDS works in the field of HIV/AIDS and development, focusing on improving the environment for informed discourse and HIV/AIDS communication messages. Its variety of projects reveals the calibre of commitment and professionalism that AMANITARE recognises and hopes to emulate throughout Africa. JAAIDS projects include Monthly Media Roundtables, training workshops
and seminars, an advocacy campaign on access to treatment, the AIDS
News Service monthly bulletin and the Nigeria-AIDS eForum.
JAAIDS Project Director, Mr. Omololu Falobi, commented that the grant, comprising various books, publications and other reference materials, would increase their work on the promotion of women’s and girls’ Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights. Mr. Falobi added that: “We are committing to develop a section of our Media Resource Centre, in Lagos, to resources on RHR of women and girls”. AMANITARE is proud to play a role in acknowledging their work and adding value to their knowledge resources.
Communications and Development Officer RAINBO
Research, Action and Information Network for the Bodily Integrity of Women
121 Salusbury Road
London NW6 6RG, UK