New initiative to prevent unwanted pregnancies among the vulnerable

Musanze residents have welcomed a new initiative to empower marginalised people with reproductive health skills to prevent unwanted pregnancies, abortion and promote family planning.

Musanze residents have welcomed a new initiative to empower marginalised people with reproductive health skills to prevent unwanted pregnancies, abortion and promote family planning.

The initiative which was unveiled on Tuesday during a meeting that brought together local leaders, local residents and the NGO, is the work of Great Lakes Initiative for Human Rights and Development (GLIHRD), a Non Governmental Organisation (NGO).

It aimed at discussing how beneficiaries could share knowledge among people in the same reproductive age bracket to prepare for a better future.

Donatille Iribagiza, the representative of National Women’s Council in Cyuve Sector, Musanze District stressed that females who carry unwanted pregnancies often lack skills and do not know their rights and most face discrimination in their families.

“This is a good initiative for us because we still have a big number of unwanted pregnancies. Young girls have scanty knowledge of reproductive health and are ignorant of their rights before and after the pregnancy,” said Iribagiza.

“Now that we have this project, we are grateful that we shall work together to ensure more skills are imparted and that our young people use them to prevent unwanted pregnancies,” she added.

Jean Nepomuscene Chris, another participant, said it was good that both boys and girls will benefit.

“The initiative will benefit both females and males since in some cases males also face discrimination and harassment in their families. While females are more affected, males are also affected whenever their parents know they were involved in impregnating young females before marriage,” he said.

Tom Mulisa, the executive secretary of GLIHRD, said the initiative was a result of research that revealed that most vulnerable females got unwanted pregnancies and their lives were affected as a result.

He said that most of them end up in jail due to abortion while others drop out.

“After the research we found out that the solution is to approach people who carry unwanted pregnancies. Most females said they were abandoned by those who impregnated them and we wanted to come closer to the vulnerable so that we teach them their rights and how to avoid such pregnancies,” he said.

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