Health & Nutrition Support
In many of the countries where Concern works, access to quality maternal healthcare is poor. Pregnant and lactating mothers (especially adolescent girls 18 and under) face a multitude of barriers when seeking care. As such they’re at increased risk for poor maternal health outcomes, including disease and death.
Based on decades of experience, Concern has adopted an integrated approach to maternal and child health. We believe than many factors influence the health of mothers and children, such as nutrition, hygiene and sanitation, environment, knowledge, attitudes, access to healthcare, and culture. We work with mothers and their partners to design solutions to the challenges faced every day in their communities. At the national and international levels, we take every opportunity to advocate on behalf of women and children for better health outcomes.
We are seeing the results of that work, much of which is part of a long-term strategy to improve health outcomes for the most vulnerable.
Livlihoods and Skills Training
Time and again, the data have shown that, when women are able to enter the workforce and have the skills, assets, and support to do so, economies improve. However, in many of the world’s poorest economies, there are barriers to women achieving economic parity.
We work in communities to challenge harmful gender norms that keep women from finding work, earning an equal salary to that of their male counterparts in similar job roles, and from thriving in their livelihoods. We provide supplies to women farmers, such as tools and seeds, as well as training in methods of conservation agriculture that can help them increase their harvests.
For women displaced by conflict, such as the millions of Syrian women living as refugees in Lebanon, Turkey, and Iraq, we offer skills trainings in areas like dairy production and sewing and embroidery, as well as coaching in basic business and job-finding skills. This allows them (many of whom are now the head of their household) to earn a steady income while living in displacement, and also gives them practical skills that will be equally vital when they return to rebuild their home country and economy.
Multiple factors lead to a gender gap in education, including child marriage, lack of access to educational facilities in remote villages, gendered violence in the classroom, and limited sanitation measures that are especially important for adolescent girls (many of whom miss school during their menstruation cycles).
We work to bring quality education to all children in the communities where we work, but focus especially on the barriers that prevent girls from staying in the classroom. We ensure that there are safe and sanitary facilities for young women to tend to their hygiene, work with communities to change attitudes towards forced and early marriage, and engage caregivers to support their daughters’ education at home. In Sierra Leone, we are currently in the middle of a multi-million dollar pilot program to reduce school-related gender-based violence that we hope to adapt for other countries and contexts.