North Africa and the Middle East
NFDO was first funded by SAAF in 2017 and worked to improve access to safe abortions for rape survivors in Shariya camps, where they obtained special permission from the Directorate of Health to carry out safe abortion services.
They are now seeking to advocate for a more progressive law in Iraq, where abortion is only legally permitted to save a pregnant person’s life. They will focus on the Kurdistan region of Iraq, noting that the parliament there has already adopted some progressive changes on women’s rights. NFDO will build a coalition of feminist organisations to work towards a shared advocacy goal of improving the legal circumstances in which abortions can be performed.
This will be the first campaign of its kind in Iraq, and NFDO will also deliver a media campaign across radio, press, TV and awareness raising sessions that seeks to make abortion a topic which can be discussed, rather than ignored, stigmatised or criminalised.
Visit the NFDO website.
In Lebanon abortion is only legally permitted to save the life of the pregnant person. Those who are able to access safe abortion services tend to have access to funds and relevant networks, meaning that women from lower socioeconomic backgrounds are particularly vulnerable to unsafe abortions and forced pregnancies. This SAAF funded project aims to make information about sexual and reproductive health and rights accessible to those who face the most barriers.
The RAWSA Network brings together feminist and human rights organisations and activists in the Middle East and North Africa for regional advocacy in support of the right to safe abortion. It is the leading regional network working on busting abortion stigma, with over 160 members across the MENA region.
With SAAF funding, RAWSA will strengthen the network by engaging new focal points, ensuring they have representation in more countries in the region, and can build membership numbers. These focal points will work together on shared advocacy goals and increased visibility for safe abortion rights within the region.
RAWSA will also develop a mobile app to provide reliable information, guidance, legal assistance and advice for women in the region in both regular and humanitarian contexts. The app will eventually be available in Arabic, English, French and Amazigh.
Visit the RAWSA Network Facebook page.