Venezuela’s Committed Counselor: An Interview with Belmar Franceschi

As the program manager at Asociación Civil de Planificación Familiar (PLAFAM) in Venezuela, Belmar Franceschi is responsible for implementing all of the organization’s programs related to sexual and reproductive health and rights. She began working as a counselor at PLAFAM’s clinic in Petare while earning a social work degree in 1993.


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Transforming a Culture of LGBT Discrimination in Venezuela

The Fight Against Femicide in Ecuador: An Interview with Tatiana Ortiz

As the Executive Director of Centro Ecuatoriano para la Promoción y Acción de la Mujer (CEPAM), Tatiana Ortiz has her hands full. Not only is Tatiana responsible for implementing the organization’s strategic political objectives, but she also guides program development and execution and leads advocacy projects on sexual and reproductive health issues.


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¿Qué Pasó Con Lo Firmado?: I Demand My Sexuality Education

Panama’s Joyful Advocate: An Interview with Juana Cooke

The passion Juana Cooke brings to her work can only be described as infectious. The Executive Director of Asociación Panameña para el Planeamiento de la Familia (APLAFA) wins people over with her sharp wit and joyful humor. But when it comes to enabling women to have bodily autonomy and access to sexual and reproductive health care, Juana Cooke doesn’t play.


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To My Son: Ask Questions. I Will Answer.

Champion of Choice Book Launch in New York City

Decades before Sheryl Sanberg told women to "lean in" or Anne-Marie Slaughter explained why women still can’t have it all, a Muslim mother of five broke through the glass ceiling at the United Nations.


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To My Son: Ask Questions. I Will Answer.

I used to assume that violence against women was something others did: a stranger, a family member, the State. While violence feeds on social structures and power imbalances between men and women, gender-based violence is an act that begins when a person decides to be violent. Statistically, those who violently attack women are men.


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I Am a Real Man, Ending Violence.

I Am a Real Man, Ending Violence.

Let's talk man to man: At some point in our lives, we may have come to believe that women are the weaker sex. Men have believed ourselves more capable and smarter than women, endowed with the right to subordinate them because of our supposed superior nature. But what gave us that idea?

Since childhood men are exposed to depictions of masculinity that involve dominating women. We identify these traits as what it means to be a "real man" and come to think women owe us obedience. Although this is absurd, it's consequences are serious.


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I Am Supporting Survivors, Ending Violence.

I Am Supporting Survivors, Ending Violence.

Throughout my work with survivors of gender-based violence, I have met women with incredible resilience. My clients, predominantly women from Latin America and the Caribbean, had a range of experiences, including domestic violence, sexual assault, and human trafficking. The sexual and reproductive health rights of these women were compromised as a part of the actions perpetrated against them. As advocates and health care providers working with this population, we must remain conscious of and sensitive to meeting survivors’ unique sexual and reproductive health needs.


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I Am a Gay Man, Ending Violence.

I Am a Gay Man, Ending Violence.

When we hear the term “gender-based violence”, what probably comes to mind is a woman being beaten by her husband or a girl being threatened by her boyfriend, but gender-based violence goes far beyond the relationship between men and women. Homophobia and transphobia are other expressions of gender-based violence.


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An Open Letter to Caribbean Men on Gender-based Violence

An Open Letter to Caribbean Men on Gender-based Violence

Dear Caribbean Men,


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My Mexican Manifesta against Gender-based Violence

My Mexican Manifesta against Gender-based Violence

There was a time in my life when I didn't engage in critical thinking and receiving sexual comments about my body defined my level of self-esteem. Little by little, as I began to understand what makes men feel they have the right to comment on the look of my behind, I started to reject these "compliments" and respond to the men who made them. Eventually, this would be one thing that would convince me to leave Mexico, my country of origin.


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What Part do Women Play in Sustaining the World?
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