08 November 2009

Medica Afghanistan: Training medical specialists

The health system in Afghanistan is severely under-developed. Some 26,000 women die every year during pregnancy or birth. The maternal death rate per 100,000 births is 1,600, with an even higher figure in remote areas. Afghanistan’s figure is the second highest in the world, just behind Sierra Leone. Around 80 per cent of pregnant women have to give birth without any professional help whatsoever. Very many women live far too far from a hospital and husbands or other relatives often forbid the pregnant woman from going to hospital anyway. Of course, this lack of medical care for mother and child has a corresponding effect on the child and infant mortality rates, which are also very high. One child in four dies before their fifth birthday.

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14 August 2009

The Afghanistan Election: An interview with a local team member

Elections will be held in Afghanistan on August 20 to choose provincial council members and a national president. For various reasons, many Afghans take little interest in the elections. Many are burdened with problems of their own. Many women who can’t even choose their own husbands can’t grasp the concept of choosing a president. And many believe that the United States has already fixed the presidential election in favor of the incumbent Hamid Karzai. They see the election as an exercise in futility. Ann Jones, an american jounalist spoke to a local team member of medica mondiale Afghanistan.

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31 March 2009

Congolese human rights activist receives the Bremen Solidarity Prize

On March 16, 2009, Immaculée Birhaheka, founder of the Congolese women’s rights organization PAIF (Promotion et Appui aux Initiatives Féminines), was awarded the 11th Bremen Solidarity Prize. As the Senate of Bremen explained: With this award, “we are honoring one of the leading human rights defenders of the Democratic Republic of Congo, for her tireless efforts on behalf of women’s rights.“

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04 March 2009

Monika Hauser awarded the Alternative Nobel Prize

medica mondiale commits herself in favour of traumatised women and girls in war and crisis zones and regards herself as advocate of the rights and interests of women who have survived sexualised war-related violence. medica mondiale offers gynaecological treatment to women, supports them by way of psychosocial counselling and legal advice, implements income-generating projects and pursues political human rights work. This year, Monika Hauser was awarded the Alternative Nobel Prize – a clear signal in medica mondiale’s commitment against sexualised war-related violence.

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03 March 2009

Training Manual: Taking action against violence in Afghanistan

Gurcharan Virdee, a medica mondiale employee, summarized her experiences from five years of work in Afghanistan in an up-to-date training manual. The manual includes training modules for activists as well as for employees from organizations and institutions. The topics covered include: women-oriented counseling, family mediation and cooperation.

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29 September 2008

UN Resolution 1820 – an overdue step on the road to strengthening women’s rights

“Historic”, “long overdue”, “an important step forwards”, this is how United Nations Resolution 1820 of June 19 was received by many. And indeed, for the first time ever the use of sexualized violence is officially designated as a war tactic – a tactic used to degrade and humiliate people, dominate them, instill fear in them, force them to relocate. Also for the first time, it affirms that sexualized violence is a potential threat to world peace and international security.

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