Assistance through the Trust Fund for Human Security for tackling Obstetric Fistula
November 2, 2004
- On November 2 (Tuesday), the Government of Japan and the United Nations (UN) decided to extend assistance of a total of 3,646,500.00 US dollars (approximately 397 million yen) through the Trust Fund for Human Security for the program "Enhancing Capacity for the prevention and treatment of Obstetric Fistula" to be implemented in the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the Republic of Mali and the Islamic Republic of Pakistan by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).
- This project aims at tackling obstetric fistula, a severe pregnancy-related health problem among women in the developing world, in the abovementioned three high priority countries. Activities included in this project are as follows:
The project in Nigeria will establish a freestanding fistula treatment center, which will not only increase access to services for Nigerian women, but also ultimately serve as a training and research center for the region.
The project in Mali is intended to strengthen emergency obstetric care for fistula prevention, enhancing five national facilities for fistula treatment, and training local associations to publicize and raise community awareness regarding obstetric fistula.
The project in Pakistan entails strategies to strengthen three regional centers to supply treatment of obstetric fistula, to organize mobile clinics to increase access to treatment in rural areas, and to conduct awareness campaigns for promoting safe delivery.
- This project is expected to promote the prevention and treatment of obstetric fistula and ensure safe and successful childbirth in the three abovementioned countries.
- The Trust Fund for Human Security was established in the UN Secretariat in March 1999 by the initiative of the Government of Japan, with total contributions of 29.0 billion yen (approximately US$ 256 million) up to the present. The Trust Fund has assisted numerous projects of UN agencies that address various threats against human life, livelihood and dignity, from the perspective of Human Security.
- Obstetric fistula is a reproductive health problem among women in the developing world. Caused by prolonged and obstructed labor, a fistula is a hole that forms between the woman's vagina and bladder or rectum, leaving her with chronic incontinence, and, in most cases, killing the baby during childbirth. Main causes include early childbearing, malnutrition and limited access to emergency obstetric care. Widespread in sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia and some Arab states, obstetric fistula affects more than 2 million girls and women worldwide.
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