New inroads Seed and Experimental Grantees 2019-2020

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The inroads Partnership Fund is supporting 12 new projects!

Seed grants. This is the fifth round of seed grants, and includes 6 projects from around the world

Rural Aid Foundation (RAFO, Uganda). Rural Aid Foundation will use the Harm Reduction Model to facilitate safe abortion storytelling and experience sharing to create awareness on abortion stigma in order to increase the confidence of university students, university health workers and law enforcement to openly speak about abortion. A photo voices booklet of the stories will be developed.

Philippine Safe Abortion Advocacy Network (PINSAN, Philippines).Telling Truer Stories is an art anthology for safe and legal abortion in the Philippines. Compelling stories help the audience develop empathy, reduce stigma, and consequently support women’s choices. Rather than plain facts and statistics, our brains are more engaged by stories, and it lets the audience relive and feel the experience. For the anthology, we’ve chosen three ways of sharing women’s stories: creative nonfiction, visual art, and short videos. We’re inviting various artists, painters, photographers, writers, storytellers, journalists, filmmakers, and movie and TV show producers to participate. We want to promote the sharing of all these truer stories so that people can learn more about the reality of abortion to encourage empathy and reduce abortion stigma. The entries will be promoted and displayed as part of our September 28 International Safe Abortion Day (september28.org) campaign and for inroads members to share and promote.

Surkuna and Las Comadres (Ecuador). The times I aborted: illustrated testimonies of women who have had more than one abortion. We seek to present stories and reflections of women who have had abortions through illustrated testimonies that will make visible the diversity of women who have multiple abortions in Ecuador: indigenous, mestizo, Afro-Ecuadorian, adolescents and young people.

Serbian Association for Sexual and Reproductive Health (Serbia). Theater based intervention as a tool for overcoming abortion prejudice in refugee populations. The project aims at creating an enabling environment for refugee/migrant population in Serbia to understand the detrimental consequences of the abortion stigma and related issues by using theatre-based interventions (TBI). TBI empowers individuals and groups by allowing them to express deep emotions and re-question attitudes through participatory theatre techniques and methodology.

Alliance for Choice (Northern Ireland). Outreach and de-escalation training toolkit for new activists. We want to keep and develop our activists feeling safe and supported in the work on the streets and online. If we can offer training that encapsulates stigma-busting, self-care and the way to engage in fruitful conversation for outreach then we will have happier and more active volunteers and more useful stigma-busting conversations with the public.

Serena Morena (Peru). Información es poder: in Quechua and english. “Information is Power: Safe abortion with pills until week 12” is an audiovisual manual made in Peru that has obtained about 80,000 views. We consider that it is time to extend its reach and translate it into Quechua, an ancestral language shared by 6 Latin American countries, and English.

Experimental Grants: for the first time, the inroads Partnership introduced a grant level for more complex, multi-part interventions, evaluations, advocacy campaigns, or technical implementation. We are excited to support 6 projects at this level.

Comité de América Latina y el Caribe para la Defensa de los Derechos de las Mujeres (CLADEM – República Dominicana). Investigation: Persecution of Abortion in the Dominican Republic. Abortion is completely prohibited and criminalized in the Dominican Republic. 27 cases were prosecuted under abortion charges in 2018, representing a 900% increase from 2017-2016. Our project aims to research these cases to identify profiles of women and girls prosecuted and the stigma in the judiciary system towards abortion.

Initiative to Resist Institutional Slavery and Exploitation (I RISE, Nigeria). Listening to End Abortion Stigma. Listening to End Abortion Stigma is designed to encourage honest and open conversations on abortion stigma and discrimination in rural communities, urban communities and internally displaced persons camps (where women and girls who are mostly victims of rape, sexual violence and trafficking from wars and insurgencies in the Northern parts of Nigeria take refuge). There exist certain mechanism of sexism that encourages abortion stigma and abortion discrimination, these include violence against women, sexual victimization, spousal rape, and sexist mistreatment of women by men, social control by means of controlling women’s bodies and women’s reproductive rights. Listening to End Abortion Stigma will help with the discharge of hurts, fear, internalized stigma/oppression through Listening, Counseling and Dance. The World Economic Forum predicts the gender gap won’t close entirely until 2186. This is too long to wait.

Knoxville Abortion Doula Collective (United States). Ensuring safe, encrypted communications for abortion advocacy groups: Katie II Proof of Concept. The Knoxville Abortion Doula Collective has transformed from a small community initiative in East Tennessee to a reliable resource for factual, non-judgemental abortion help, including practical and emotional support as well as procedure and logistical funding. The past 18 months have seen incredible growth in the amount of clients we’ve been able to serve, as well as strengthening our regional connections to become a sustainable source of abortion access power in the Southeast and Appalachia. Our approach to abortion support is unique, based from the ground-up on a proprietary technology, Katie, that was built specifically with abortion safety in mind–for clients, volunteers, and providers. Katie enables grassroots community-aid organizations to securely and privately assist clients by combining the functionality of a call center, a helpdesk ticketing system, and a volunteer shift scheduling system. Thanks to the inroads Experimental Grant, we will now be able to onboard four new partner organizations in our region, empowering them to provide greater protection to their user population while streamlining support services. 

Hidden Pockets (India). De-criminalization of Abortion for Single Woman and Young girls in India. At Hidden Pockets, we have been working as a referral platform for sexually active young people. We realise most of the barriers to services are being created by limited understanding around abortion laws. We are trying to make these laws more accessible and available for people.

Association pour la Santé des Femmes d’Afrique, du Maghreb et Monde Arabe (ASFAMM, Tunisia) Experience based co-designing (EBCD) solutions to abortion stigma in Tunisia. We will use experience based co-design (EBCD) methods that engage midwives and women seeking abortion care in jointly generating concrete solutions towards reducing abortion stigma in Tunisia. This innovative pilot/model of using EBCD in abortion care will be designed for ease of adaptation and similar use in other settings.

Alliance for Choice (Northern Ireland). Abortion & Disability; The Whispered Conversation. Abortion stigma exists in many forms as does disability stigma. We would like to use this project to explore how women’s rights and gender justice movements can take advantage of opportunities to challenge stigma without sacrificing our most basic principles of intersectionality and inclusivity. We aim to challenge abortion stigma through lived experience and a broader understanding of the relationship between disability and abortion rights.

We look forward to the exciting learning that these inroads members will be able to share in the coming months!