Tomorrow’s world will be shaped by the young people of today. With reproductive choice, we can help them make choices about their futures.
From societal stigma that can lead to misconceptions about their sexual health and rights, to laws and policies that require parental consent, young people have poorer access to reproductive choice across the board. Compared to all women of reproductive age, girls and young women aged 15-19 are twice as likely to lack access to contraception.
These barriers to reproductive choice have real consequences. Pregnancy can be dangerous for adolescents and complications during pregnancy and childbirth continue to be the leading cause of death for adolescent girls aged 15-19 globally.
Nathalie, an MSI provider in the Democratic Republic of Congo, teaches young people about their sexual and reproductive health and rights.
Supporting 2 million futures
At MSI, we are committed to transforming healthcare for adolescents. In 2017, we launched a tailored adolescent strategy to boost young people’s access to sexual and reproductive healthcare.
By building awareness of the health and rights of young people, setting up adolescent-friendly services and changing laws that can prevent access, we can transform choice for the next generation.
And we’re making an impact. In 2023, we supported over 2 million adolescents with reproductive choice, meaning girls like Aisha (pseudonym), a student in Senegal, can pursue the future of her choice.
Adolescent-friendly sexual and reproductive healthcare
Our teams take sexual and reproductive healthcare directly to young people.
For example, in Zambia, MSI’s mobile clinic caravans travel directly into communities to provide adolescent-friendly care.
In 2021, Maureen, an 18-year-old student in Zambia accessed an Intra-Uterine Device (IUD) following a consultation with an MSI provider.
Maureen told us that accessing information and services in the caravan “was much easier, as there were other young people there that were a similar age, and the staff were welcoming and friendly.”
“Young people have big dreams. With the help of contraception, we can achieve them.”
Maureen, 18-year-old client, Zambia
For a gender-equal world, women and girls need choice
Analysis from MSI Reproductive Choices found that if adolescents had better access to sexual and reproductive healthcare and could avoid unintended pregnancy, millions more girls would remain in school every year.
With adolescent-friendly sexual and reproductive healthcare, we can support young people with the information they need to understand their bodies, have safe relationships, avoid unintended pregnancy and determine their own futures.
Every year, in sub-Saharan Africa, up to 4 million girls drop out of school or are excluded due to unintended pregnancy.
MSI’s commitment to young people
There is a long way to go until all young people, everywhere can access the sexual and reproductive healthcare they need.
That’s why our commitment to reaching adolescents is at the core of our MSI 2030 strategy, because we know just how transformational the benefits can be.
More on MSI’s work
We’re working towards a world where every young person has reproductive choice. Read more and learn how you can help.
The path to gender equality
The path to a gender equal world begins with reproductive choice. We’re working towards a world where all women and girls can pursue their own futures.
Donate to make choice possible
Last year we supported 2 million adolescents with their sexual and reproductive health. Donate to support young people’s futures.
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Together, we can support young people to make choices about their bodies and futures and help build a more gender equal world. Get in touch to discuss how.