The three-year SAFE project will be implemented through intensive program activities, including ENGAGE multimedia presentations and media training, in Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), one state in southern Nigeria, South Africa, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. SAFE is dedicated to expanding access to safe abortion by reaching global and national audiences with the latest data and evidence on abortion, and building the capacity of advocates to achieve positive change. Each year in Africa, approximately 1.6 million women are treated for complications from unsafe abortion, and unsafe abortion is a leading cause of maternal death in the region, accounting for at least 9 percent of maternal deaths in 2014.
The SAFE project will support the work of in-country partners in generating new or renewed policy or resource commitments around abortion, including service guidelines . In some countries that may result in advocates achieving passage of safe abortion policies or implementation of policies that already exist. In other countries, it will lead to increased knowledge among advocates and policymakers of data and of health impacts of unsafe abortions. The first two countries of focus will be Zimbabwe and Côte d’Ivoire.