Cervical cancer screening and women’s empowerment in rural Kenya:  Identifying mechanisms for promoting empowerment and assessing resiliency in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic

Cervical cancer screening and women’s empowerment in rural Kenya: Identifying mechanisms for promoting empowerment and assessing resiliency in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic

The empowerment of women and girls in low and middle-income countries has long been recognized as a cornerstone of sustainable development. Yet despite billions in foreign aid spent on development projects annually, the international community is falling short on meeting the sustainable development goal (SDG) to achieve gender equality. The gendered impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic have provided further setbacks for women. However, incorporating mechanisms aimed at increasing women’s empowerment into existing and future development projects is one potential solution to close the gender gap. Indeed, interdependencies of the SDGs can encourage positive spillovers or downstream effects; efforts targeted at one SDG can also impact another. Following this assumption, it is possible for interventions aimed at SDG 3 (ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages) to, for example, impact SDG 5 (achieve gender equality and empowerment of all women and girls). My dissertation project leverages these interdependencies and exploits an external health intervention targeted at women...
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What President-Elect Biden’s win means for COVID relief in Kenya and other low- and middle-income countries

What President-Elect Biden’s win means for COVID relief in Kenya and other low- and middle-income countries

Recent attention has been focused on what the Biden-Harris administration can accomplish with executive orders starting from day one. From student debt relief to fully implementing the Defense Production Act, these actions can have a direct impact on domestic economic relief and health care. History tells us that, like every recent Democratic presidential administration, within the first few days of office Biden will also repeal the Global Gag Rule. This executive order will permit non-governmental organizations (NGOs) receiving U.S. foreign aid to provide comprehensive sexual and reproductive health care, including abortion advocacy and abortion services. But the impact this action could have goes well beyond abortion and into other areas of public health as well. From July-October 2020, my two undergraduate research assistants (Ema Kuczura and Sarah Hubner) and I interviewed 35 sexual and reproductive health NGOs in Kenya who universally reported that the Global Gag Rule (implemented by the Trump administration in January 2017 and expanded by Secretary of State...
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