Solidarité des femmes pour le développement intégral (SOFEDI) and the Coalition 14 have been advocating for stronger policies on access to SRHR services in South Kivu, including family planning, youth access, and comprehensive abortion and post-abortion care in line with the updated national law. They have built strong connections through their engagement with parliamentarians and other influential stakeholders in the province.
While advocacy efforts to pass a specific bill improving SRHR services in South Kivu are ongoing, SOFEDI are collaborating with other advocates, both nationally and within South Kivu, to disseminate the Standards and Guidelines for Comprehensive Woman-Centred Abortion Care amongst policymakers and medical professionals to improve the understanding of the legal parameters for abortion services in DRC. Ensuring that influential stakeholders have a complete understanding of the national law is a crucial step in furthering province-specific policies and providing people in the region with the care they need.
SOFEDI employs several strategies to improve access and quality of abortion and post-abortion care for rape survivors in South Kivu, DRC. These include clinical training and values clarification exercises for healthcare providers in public and faith-based facilities; educating local courts, police departments and others to the importance of safe abortion and post-abortion care; and ensuring that survivors of sexual violence and their communities are informed of the right to access rape treatment and respectful post-abortion care, and to live free from sexual violence. As a result of their work, SOFEDI report that health facilities, particularly faith-based ones, provide more compassionate and less discriminatory care for survivors.