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Two Women and Girls Friendly Spaces constructed with the support of UNFPA in collaboration with its partner DSW and funded by KOICA were inaugurated and officially opened today.

The two women and girls friendly spaces were set up at the Haroressa and Bule Hora health centers of Dilla and Bule Hora town of  Gedeo and West Guji Zones of  Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples and Oromia regions respectively. The spaces are expected to create a safe environment where women and girls can access information and support, participate in activities, build their networks and strengthen relationships with peers.

Two staff trained on psychosocial first aid, counselling skill, referral and adolescent and youth SRH peer education were deployed at the safe spaces to provide support for GBV survivors, facilitate prevention and outreach activities, information and awareness-raising psychosocial and recreational activities.

The women and girls’ safe spaces will be an entry point for the integration of prevention and response to gender-based violence and harmful practices with the sexual and reproductive health through youth-friendly corners at the health centers supported by UNFPA.

The women and girls’ safe spaces were established as part of the five-year humanitarian-development-peace nexus programme which is being implemented with a total budget of close to USD 3.5 million funded by KOICA. The programme which was started in 2019 is complementing efforts at strengthening the capacity of adolescents and young people to make informed decisions on their sexual and reproductive health and rights, especially on family planning, in selected districts in the West Guji and Gedeo zones in Oromia and Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples Regions respectively.