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Empowerment and education

Working to improve sexual and reproductive health and rights

UNFPA works with key government officials to address sexual and reproductive health and rights for young people and is a trusted source of support, thanks to years of our partnership.

A key milestone was the inclusion of a module on sexual and reproductive health into their family life skills training conducted by the National Population and Family Development Board. This is a nationwide service for young people, and a compulsory part of high school education.  UNFPA’s long-standing relationship with the government ensures that it can operate in a culturally sensitive way, taking account of the country’s majority Muslim population and the religious sensitivities around reproductive health and rights topics.

Whilst sex education in the country may promote abstinence, but thanks to UNFPA’s advocacy, it also includes crucial information on safe sex and reproductive health. By using success stories from other countries where it has worked, UNFPA is able to prove that heterosexual sexual activity rates are lower when young people are educated. UNFPA has been able to work with faith leaders to ensure that the national policy on population health incorporates both Islamic teaching, which is based on respect for the body, and at the same time is based on the best evidence-based social policies.