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17 Jul 2020

A Gendered Crisis: Webinar on delivering SRHR to survivors of SGBV during COVID-19

Marie Stopes International


Pathways to care, WHO guidelines, Medical Abortion (MA), Surgical Abortion, Women's rights, Counselling, Non-judgmental services

As COVID-19 impacts access to reproductive healthcare globally and with rising rates of gender-based violence being reported, it is essential we preserve access to comprehensive sexual and reproductive healthcare for survivors. In the fifth webinar in MSI's external Spotlight webinar series, A Gendered Crisis: Ensuring SRHR for women facing violence under COVID-19, we explored practical strategies for how we can collaborate and innovate to do so.

On Thursday 16th July, we were joined by speakers from the World Health Organisation, Marie Stopes UK, Population Services Zimbabwe and Katswe Sistahood (a movement of young people fighting for SRHR in Zimbabwe) to discuss the unique risks facing women under lockdown, the role that safe abortion and contraceptive providers can play in supporting survivors, and the importance of partnership during the pandemic and beyond.

Presentations included:

  • Bethan Cobley, Marie Stopes International’s Director of External Affairs, moderating and presenting our global commitment to supporting survivors of SGBV at MSI, how we are learning from specialist organisations in this area to build our frontline provision, and the increasing rates of SGBV witnessed under COVID-19.
  • Claudia Garcia-Moreno, Unit Head, Department of Sexual and Reproductive Health and Research, the World Health Organisation, who directs WHO's work on gender-based violence and presented on the essential role of sexual and reproductive healthcare providers in supporting survivors, as well as the WHO tools available to support providers to do so safely.
  • Rumbidzai Matewe, Programmes Director at Population Services Zimbabwe, presenting with Debra Mwase of Katswe Sistahood, a youth movement supporting survivors of gender-based violence in Zimbabwe, on how partnership and referral pathways between GBV and SRHR specialists can ensure high quality care for survivors.
  • Amy Bucknall, Named Safeguarding Nurse at Marie Stopes UK, presenting on the rising rates of domestic violence and safeguarding referrals seen in the UK under lockdown, their safeguarding pathways for clients facing violence, and how they have adapted their programme to ensure access under COVID-19, including with the introduction of telemedicine.

Watch the webinar in full below and the slides can be downloaded here. Join the conversation over social media via #SpotlightSRHR. 

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