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Reaching for the Stars: The Inspiring Story of Fatima Tayabu – Zamfara State, Nigeria

The first thing one notices about Fatima is her charming and captivating open smile which adorns her face like a half moon. As the streets come alive with the first rays of sun, one sees even more clearly the guarded looks from the other children getting set for the day’s activities and the striking realization that smiles are not common place. This is not unconnected to the restrictive upbringing and early disciplines imposed by culture and traditions. But Fatima cannot stop smiling; come to think of it, she cannot stop herself from doing several other things. For example, walking few kilometers to go to school every morning, rain or shine. And this makes nine-year-old Fatima the first literate person in her family of seven. (more…)

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Supporting community driven Prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV (PMTCT)

The Ijaw community of Eastern Obolo have since the conception of Akwa-Ibom State in 1987 been a community distinctly set apart from the rest of the state. The only access to the Local Government Area (LGA) is a single two lane road built on marshland which is prone to flooding during the tropical rainy season. To buttress this point, it is one of two LGAs with more island wards than land. It had no secondary level healthcare facility until ten months ago and currently has only two doctors providing care to the whole community. Care for HIV infected persons, let alone HIV positive pregnant women, had been minimal till six months ago when FHI 360 with funding from USAID and the Akwa Ibom state government trained Community Health Extension Workers and nurses from the Health Centers and Health Posts on PMTCT. (more…)

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16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence (25 November – 10 December 2017)

The 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence is used as an organizing strategy by individuals and organizations around the world to call for the prevention and elimination of violence against women and girls. It was originated by the first Women’s Global Leadership Institute in 1991 and is coordinated by the Center for Women’s Global Leadership. (more…)

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World Toilet Day 19 November

Toilets Save Lives

Toilets save lives because human waste spreads killer diseases. However, 4.5 billion people live without a household toilet that safely disposes of their waste. World Toilet Day is about inspiring action to tackle the global sanitation crisis.

By 2030, the Sustainable Development Goals, specifically SDG #6, aim to reach everyone with sanitation, and halve the proportion of untreated wastewater and increase recycling and safe reuse.

For that to be achieved, we need everyone’s poo to be contained, transported, treated and disposed of in a safe and sustainable way. Today, for billions of people around the world, sanitation systems are either non-existent or ineffective and, consequently, progress in health and child survival is seriously undermined.

Also, poor water and sanitation cost developing countries around $260 billion a year, 1.5 per cent of their gross domestic product (GDP), while every dollar invested could bring a five-fold return by keeping people healthy and productive.

(more…)

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