On January 08 2023, DSW Tanzania was invited by the Tanzania Parliamentary Association on Population and Development (TPAPD) to participate in partners’ conference organized by the TPAPD in collaboration with the European Parliamentary Forum on Population and Development (EPF). The EPF Members visited the United Republic of Tanzania to participate on a study tour on Reproductive, Maternal, New-born, Child and Adolescent Health (RMNCAH) aiming to engage showcasing of interim and long term solutions to improve RMNCAH of the most vulnerable population, particularly women and girls. EPF is a network of Members of Parliament from across Europe who are committed to support Sexual and Reproductive Health.
During the tour, a stakeholder conference was organized for Parliamentarians, Private Sector, NGOs and Government Officials. The conference program included presentations representing different sectors.
DSW facilitated a presentation on “Advancing Reproductive health services in Tanzania-a case of capacity development of SRHR Ecosystem”. The presentation was done by the DSW Tanzania Country Director Mr. Peter Owaga. This highlighted the priority to invest in youth while underlining issues and challenges facing youth including; limited access to adolescents’ friendly sexual and reproductive health information, Inadequate SRHR knowledge, Insufficient use of youth-friendly services including contraceptives, lack of life skills and limited economic opportunities. As a result of these challenges youth are in a high risk to early and unintended pregnancies, HIV and sexually transmitted infections, Gender inequality and harmful social norms and practices. Agenda discussion also revolved on child and forced marriage, FGM, malnutrition, anemia, substance abuse, mental health and school drop outs.
During this presentation, he also highlighted the Global and National policy frameworks that DSW contributes to in order to strengthen the capacity of SRHR ecosystem. The data on SRHR situation trends were discussed including teenage pregnancy and Sexual Gender based violence. The progress and interventions by Government and partners was commended as it recognizes investing in youth health, education and decent work. DSW shared best practices on how its approach has contributed in strengthening capacity of the SRHR ecosystem through joint efforts with key actors’ role in advancing SRHR for youth, inclusiveness of the approach and joint effort of every individual and department in ensuring SRHR advancement.
DSW call for action at the conference were: Support efforts to fully implement the National Accelerated Action and Investment Agenda for Adolescent Health and Wellbeing 2021/22 – 2024/25 (NAIA-AHW) to meet its commitment to improve young people’s health and wellbeing; Invest in Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRH) including Gender equality programs to address challenges faced by youth in Tanzania; Continue public and private partnerships in increasing resources to support Health Service Provision.