Burundi is a small, landlocked country in Central Africa with a population of 11.5 million people. An estimated 86% of Burundians live in rural areas.
The modern contraceptive prevalence rate for all women ages 15 to 49 is 17.5%. The maternal mortality ratio is 548 deaths per 100,000 live births. Of women ages 15 to 49, 43.6% have experienced physical or sexual violence.
Our Work in Burundi
Since 2014, EngenderHealth has supported national and local organizations in Burundi to integrate support and care for survivors of sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) with HIV and family planning programming, with a focus on gender- and youth-sensitive services. Together with partners, EngenderHealth has strengthened the capacity of health providers to deliver SGBV care, with a special focus and training on services that address the needs of children and adolescents; provided guidance for on-site coaching and mentoring; unified SGBV data collection tools; and identified items to be included in SGBV service provision kits for the national HIV supply chain system.
From 2014 to 2019, EngenderHealth partnered with the Ministry of Public Health and the Fight Against AIDS, with funding from USAID, through the Burundians Responding Against Violence and Inequality (BRAVI) program. Together, we worked to improve the prevention of and response to SGBV, in part by providing integrated FP, HIV, and SGBV services. We supported governmental and civil society organizations in establishing a systemic response to SGBV, especially the health sector response, by developing criteria and curricula to train healthcare workers to screen for and provide initial treatment for survivors of SGBV and to collect forensic evidence. Through integrating FP and SGBV services, we supported the screening of approximately 35,100 FP service users in 39 health facilities, which resulted in identifying 503 survivors of SGBV.
Our current GIR’ITEKA (“Be Respected”) project builds on the work of the BRAVI program. SWAA-Burundi, who was a partner during BRAVI, is now leading GIR’ITEKA with technical expertise support from EngenderHealth. We work to enable partner organizations responding to HIV to integrate SGBV and FP programming into their work, with a focus on gender- and youth-sensitive services, so they have the training and resources necessary to sustain the project in the years ahead.