November 24, 2021
- Ottawa, Ontario - Global Affairs Canada
The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on health systems everywhere, disproportionally impacting women and girls around the world. To mitigate this impact, the Honourable Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of International Development and Minister responsible for the Pacific Economic Development Agency of Canada, participated in the 27th Canadian Conference on Global Health where he announced $325 million in funding for eleven projects with Canadian health partners. This is part of Canada’s ten-year commitment to global health and rights. This investment, spread over five to seven years, will help key partners to increase access to essential services, as well as promote gender equality and transform decision-making structures that reinforce and perpetuate inequality, with a focus on Sub-Saharan Africa.
Canada remains committed, now more than ever, to delivering on our Feminist International Assistance Policy. This policy puts women and girls at the centre of its development efforts – including by ensuring that health systems meet their needs through support for comprehensive sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR).
The funded projects will focus on SRHR and on improving the quality of and access to integrated health services by women, adolescents and children. Access to SRHR is critical to advancing health, gender equality, human rights, and empowering women and adolescent girls. When that focus is lost, the number of maternal deaths goes up, more teenage girls drop out of school, and women lose their right to participate equally in all aspects of society.
Today’s investment will enable key partners to support the most marginalized children, adolescents, women and girls with comprehensive sexual and reproductive health and rights services as core components of essential health services.