Friends of UNFPA (formerly Americans for UNFPA) supports the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), an international development agency that promotes the right of every woman, man and child to enjoy a life of health and equal opportunity. UNFPA supports countries in using population data for policies and programs to reduce poverty and to ensure that every pregnancy is wanted, every birth is safe, every young person is free of HIV/AIDS, and every girl and woman is treated with dignity and respect. UNFPA provides women’s health care and promotes the rights of women around the world. It is the largest international source of such assistance.
Americans for UNFPA was dedicated to building American support for the work of UNFPA and to restoring the United States’ moral and financial contribution to the organization.
2010: Channel made a grant to Americans for UNFPA to support an honorarium for Yvette Mulongo, their speaker for a series of events and speeches in Seattle, March 8-9, 2011. The honorarium was intended to honor Mulongo’s work on behalf of women’s rights in the Democratic Republic of the Congo as the Director of Family Planning Services for SANRU (Santé Rurale or Rural Health Program). Through her courageous work, Mulongo “transforms communities by promoting cultural acceptance of women’s and girls rights in a land where gender-based violence is deeply rooted and where women’s bodies have literally become a battleground.”
2009: Channel made a grant to Americans for UNFPA to support an honorarium for Beatrice Chelangat, recipient of the 2010 Board of Advocates Award for the Health and Dignity of Women and their speaker for a series of events and speeches in Seattle, February 25-26, 2010. The honorarium was intended to honor the work Chelangat undertook on behalf of women’s rights in Uganda by establishing safe houses for girls, and developing an alternative tradition to female genital cutting (FGC) as the Director General of the REACH (Reproductive, Educative and Community Health) project.
Working with elders and through peer educators and advocates at all levels (and supported by UNFPA), REACH has educated both parents and youth about the dangers of FGC and the need to abandon it. Today, more than 90 percent of adolescents targeted by REACH have escaped FGC. REACH has also developed alternative rites of passage to replace FGC and lobbied local and national leaders to outlaw FGC.
In December 2009, after years of lobbying work, the Parliament in Uganda passed legislation banning FGC.
2008: Channel made a grant to Americans for UNFPA to support an honorarium for Sakena Yacoobi, their speaker for a series of events and speeches in Seattle in February 2009. The honorarium was intended to honor Yacoobi’s work on behalf of women’s rights in Afghanistan with the Afghan Institute for Learning (which later became a Channel grantee partner). Dr. Yacoobi spoke at the University of Washington Department of Global Health Lecture Series (Feb. 5, 2009) which has archived her speech and the Q&A.
2007: Channel made a grant to Americans for UNFPA to support an honorarium for Jamilah Ghalib Al-Sharie, their speaker for a series of events and speeches in Seattle in November 2007. The honorarium was intended to honor Al-Sharie’s work on behalf of women’s reproductive health in Yemen with the Yemen Family Care Association.