Aug 2, 2016: New Delhi: Manila: The International Planned Parenthood Federation through its humanitarian wing, the SPRINT Initiative, is providing humanitarian assistance in the conflict-affected areas of Cotabato in the Philippines.
The armed conflict between the Government of the Philippines (GPH) and the secessionist Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) has lasted for more than five decades and has displaced around a million people in central Mindanao, Philippines. According to reports dated April 2016, the armed conflict has escalated, creating concerns over a protracted crisis and the vulnerability of women and girls.
The conflict has internally displaced farmers who are living in the hinterland communities of the province of North Cotabato, namely in the municipalities of Makilala, Magpet, Kabacan and Tulunan. The SPRINT Initiative project will reach out to 25 affected villages or barangays located in geographically isolated and depressed areas, thereby making access to healthcare an extremely rare thing. As per the assessments done by IPPF’s East and South East Asia and Oceania Region office’s (ESEAOR) Member Association, the Family Planning Association of Philippines (FPOP), access to Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRH) services in these villages is very limited.
“IPPF-SPRINT and FPOP will coordinate the implementation of this project with (the) UNFPA centre in Mindanao throughout the 4-month period from August to November, 2016. The Minimum Initial Service Package (MISP) will be implemented on-the-ground. IPPF-SPRINT will reach out to around 15,000 beneficiaries in the area and will provide crucial and life-saving SRH services. An amount of AUD 50,000 has been mobilised for the response,” said Aditi Ghosh, Director, IPPF-SPRINT.
This humanitarian response is being funded by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) under the Australian government.
“FPOP is a part of the UN cluster system, particularly Health and Protection clusters in the national level. FPOP will also coordinate the humanitarian response with UN regional centres covering affected areas. The North Cotabato Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (DRRMC) will also play a key role in implementing the MISP,” said Nora Murat, Regional Director, IPPF-ESEAOR.
IPPF-SPRINT will work on prevention and management of the consequences of sexual violence, reduction of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) including HIV transmission, prevention of excess maternal and neonatal mortality and morbidity, plan for the provision of comprehensive SRH services and integrate into primary health care as the situation permits.
Apart from the above, orientation on MISP and Risk Management for implementing partners and project staff/volunteers will be undertaken.
Contact info: Murali Kunduru: MMKunduru@ippfsar.org
Jayamalar Samuel: JSamuel@ippfeseaor.org
Media Contact: Rhea Chawla: RChawla@ippfsar.org
The SPRINT Initiative is a Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRH) Programme in Crisis and Post-Crisis Situations. SPRINT ensures access to essential lifesaving SRH services for women, men and children in times of crises, a time when services are most needed yet are not prioritised or recognised by key humanitarian responders.
The SPRINT Initiative saves lives and delivers on behalf of the Australian Government aid program (DFAT: Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade), which aims to provide more effective preparedness for and response to disasters and crises.
The Initiative is managed by the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) and represents its commitment to increasing access to SRH services for crisis-affected populations. The International Planned Parenthood Federation is a global service provider and a leading advocate of sexual and reproductive health and rights for all. It is a worldwide movement of national organisations working with and for communities and individuals.