Improving reproductive health rights to prevent teenage pregnancies in Niger
In Niger, 76.3% of girls marry before the age of 18 and 57% have already started their reproductive life. Of deaths among girls aged 15-19 in Niger, 34.4% are linked to pregnancy and its complications, with adolescent girls accounting for 25% of the country’s maternal deaths. The fight against teenage pregnancies is a priority for Niger, but the policies and programs promoting sexual and reproductive health implemented over the past decades have had little effect.
This project addresses teenage pregnancy and the norms, practices, and values surrounding adolescent sexuality and gender-based violence. A participatory research approach will be adopted, including hiring and training youth leaders from the communities where the project will be implemented. It will help to strengthen local capacities while benefitting from local networks, knowledge, and socio-cultural considerations.
Evidence-based models co-created with communities will be developed and implemented. They will integrate the prevention of early pregnancy and gender-based violence and the promotion of adolescent reproductive health rights, with particular attention to the experiences of adolescent girls aged 10-14. A participatory assessment will highlight the comparative advantages of the integrated model for scaling up advocacy.
This project is part of a research initiative developed by IDRC called “Combatting sexual and gender-based violence and improving adolescent sexual and reproductive health and rights in West Africa”.