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Ongoing projects :: Access

Access to health care and contraception

AccessAccess to health care and contraception 

In 2019 as in previous years access to healthcare is a very important part of BFPA’s work. The Association provides ongoing services in the field of sexual and reproductive health in 5 cities in Bulgaria – Plovdiv, Stara Zagora, Rousse, Pleven and Sofia. The main target groups of the organization are young people and representatives of marginalized groups with difficult access to health and social services. BFPA performs gynecological examinations, various  STI tests and provides modern contraceptives. More than 10,000 women and men use these services annually. In the previous year counseling and testing for syphilis was added as well as referrals for gonorrhea and trichomoniasis.
 
Partnerships with various municipal structures and with OB/GYN specialists as well as the collaboration with the National Network of health Mediators allow BFPA to provide contraceptives in many other locations country-wide. This way the organization geographic scope expands and with it the possibilities for access to contraception and specialized medical care. At the same time, as part of other initiatives we have the possibility to work directly with the target groups. For example, as part of the project Mobile services, education and trafficking prevention for women in rural areas of Bulgaria the BFPA has been providing gynecological examinations, tests and contraceptives in 16 settlements for the last 5 years. The Association had a similar approach while executing projects targeted at Roma people and other socially marginalized societies in the areas of Yambol, Burgas, Ruse, Pazardzhik, Montana, Dobrich, Sliven, Blagoevgrad, Stara Zagora, Shumen and Razgrad.
 
The activities related to providing access to health care - especially in the area of sexual and reproductive health - are funded form various sources:
• With funding from international partners, the main donor being the International Planned Parenthood Federation and the Norway Financial mechanism
• With funding from municipalities
• With self-financing
• In 2018, at BFPA's static and mobile clinics, and also through community based activities, SRH services were delivered  to over 10 000 clients, more than half of which are considered "vulnerable".
• In 2006 BFPA registered its own health center in Sofia (owned 100% by the BFPA) with the idea the generated income to be used for execution of social projects around the country. It is still not generating large funds but it is part of our vision for the future. You can find out more about the health centre at www.semeinoplanirane.com

 

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Latest news

Second training of the peer educators from Sofia Academy for health education

Petrohan, April 12-14, 2019

In the three days between April 12 and 14 took place the second module of the preparation of peer educators from the Health and Sexuality Education Youth Academy, realized with the support of the PIST directorate of Sofia Municipality. The focus of the second stage of education was upon elaboration of communication skills, teambuilding and team work, acquiring of knowledge about the prevention of trafficking of human beings, knowledge of hygiene as a starting point to peer education, adopting healthy eating habits and preventing eating disorders, work with vulnerable groups. In addition to health knowledge, the future peer educators acquired also social and personal ones – how to define one’s personal space – useful when working with young people with disabilities, and how to plan their own free time.

 
The health mediators from Montana, Zaichar and Pirot share their experience

Zaechar – Pirot, March 20-21, 2019 

On March 20th and 21st 2019 the health mediators from Montana participated in working meetings with their colleagues in Zaichar and Pirot. The meetings are organized by BFPA and  take place within the final phase of the ZOV (HEA) programme (Health and Education for All), supported by the Bulgarian – Swiss Cooperation Programme. Besides the members of the National Network of Health Mediators (NNHM) from Montana, in the study trip were included health specialists working with vulnerable communities in the field, representatives of the Regional Health Inspectorate and of the local municipality. Their colleagues were expecting them in Serbia: representatives of local authorities, local NGOs in Zaichar and Pirot, health specialists, volunteers from the vulnerable local communities.
The key topics on which Bulgarian and Serbian colleagues worked together were exchange of ideas, presenting good practices related to improving the access to health services, education and social services for marginalized groups. The health mediators from Montana were selected to share their experience due to the good results they achieved in their work on the ZOV Programme.

 
First field activities under the Project “My Body, My Rights”

Sofia, Montana, Yambol, February 18-28, 2019

 Partners in the project ‘My Body, my Rights’ (2018–2021) gathered in Sofia on February 25 and 26, 2019 to exchange experience and information. The initiative for health care, information and services for vulnerable people from marginalized families is implemented in Sofia, Yambol and Montana. The meeting gathered the team of BFPA, local project coordinators and health mediators form the three locations, as well as municipalities representatives.
So far, the project team conducted 24 focus groups in the three project locations Montana, Sofia and Yambol - 6 in each one. Participants in the focus groups were girls and boys aged 12-15, 16-25 and over 25 years old. The aim is to explore the attitudes of young people in the communities (especially marginalized groups) towards the family planning services offered and whether they can take independent decisions about their reproductive health.

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Ongoing projects :: Access