The Netherlands Embassy in Dhaka, Bangladesh

Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights and Gender

“The years of adolescence and youth are a critical period in sexual development. We believe that young people are entitled to accurate information and appropriate services, and to an enabling environment that empowers them to take healthy decisions and exercise control over their own bodies. Low teenage pregnancy rates in the Netherlands demonstrate that the vast majority of young people act responsibly when given the opportunity to self-regulate their sexuality”. (Marijke Wijnroks, Special Ambassador for SRHR and HIV-AIDS)

The Netherlands is one of the most active and long-standing partners in the area of sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) and gender in Bangladesh. Specifically, the Netherlands aims to reduce maternal mortality and end violence against women and child marriage in Bangladesh. 

To implement SRHR in Bangladesh four result areas have been developed:

  • Young people are better informed and are thus able to make healthier choices regarding their sexuality.
  • A growing number of people have access to anti-retroviral drugs, and other commodities, such as contraceptives and sanitary napkins, required for good sexual and reproductive health.
  • Public and private clinics provide better sexual and reproductive healthcare services, which more and more people are using.
  • Greater respect for sexual and reproductive rights of people whose rights are denied.

To achieve gender equality, three result areas have been developed:

  • Women and girls are less exposed to violence and victims can access appropriate services.
  • Women’s decision-making power has increased.
  • Women’s opportunities as economic actors have improved.

These result areas tie in with the United Nations’ Millenium Goals 5 and 6: the reduction by three quarters.

Millenium Development goal 3: Promote gender equality and empower women

Millennium Development goal 5: Reduce by three quarters, between 1990 and 2015, the maternal mortality ratio and achieve universal access to reproductive health by 2015

Millennium Development goal 6: Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases.