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For Kyrgyzstan’s LGBTQI community, risks escalate under COVID-19 pandemic

BISHKEK, Kyrgyzstan – Alina* has faced a lifetime of challenges all too familiar to other transgender people. And she says those difficulties have been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Alina was young when she began to feel like she was “living in somebody else’s body,” she said. “I loved...

Safety elusive for women in South Sudan’s protection sites amid pandemic

BENTIU, South Sudan – Since the COVID-19 pandemic arrived in South Sudan in April, more than 2,000 cases of the illness have been recorded. Tensions are rising within families and communities, leaving women and girls vulnerable to violence as they attempt to isolate or escape from the virus. “Women suffer in...

Health workers in West Africa “in daily danger” while providing reproductive health services

GODOMEY, Benin/ASSAHOUN, Togo/CONAKRY, Guinea As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread, health workers in West Africa say it has been challenging to prevent the spread of the virus while providing life-saving sexual and reproductive health services. “As midwives, we are constantly struggling to ensure that we protect ourselves...

Five things you didn’t know about practices that harm girls

UNITED NATIONS, New York – Every day, hundreds of thousands of girls around the world are harmed physically or psychologically, with the full knowledge and consent of their families, friends and communities. And without urgent action, the situation is likely to worsen. These are the findings of UNFPA’s flagship 2020...

Indigenous, Afro-Honduran communities join together to fight pandemic

TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras – As countries grapple with the COVID-19 pandemic, indigenous and Afro-descendant communities are among the most vulnerable, with many facing poverty, poor health-care access and limited information. In Honduras, members of these communities are joining together to ensure information and resource reach the most vulnerable. “We have...


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