Involvement of Men and Mothers-in-Law in Health Promotion

In Uzbekistan, a newly married young woman often moves in with her husband’s family and lives with him and her parents-in-law. Not only the man but also the mother-in-law have influential positions within the family structure, and play important roles in regard to reproductMeeting of Uzbekian women with community leaders.ive health decisions.

The GIZ program Health in Central Asia developed a gender-sensitive and locally adapted concept of health promotion: In two pilot regions, the most respected men and mothers-in-law were selected to carry out awareness raising measures in their villages and cities. They were trained in new approaches to reproductive health and family budget management based on health expenditures, as well as in educational techniques. Via interactive methods, like pictures in comic style and real life stories or videos, brochures and posters, they entered into a dialogue with other men and mothers-in-law and discussed reproductive health issues. The community leaders and target groups improved their knowledge and awareness on reproductive health issues.

As a result, long-term behavioral changes occurred within families and had a positive impact on gender roles of men and women. Integrating the measures into local (governmental and community-based) structures ensured sustainability and guaranteed a strong commitment and support.

This project was one of the top ten award winning teams of the 2012 GIZ Gender Competition.
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