Our commitment has guided our work since day one: serving consumers – at scale – with the tools to take charge of their lives. And with new funding from Global Affairs Canada (GAC), we – PSI in partnership with Marie Stopes International (MSI) – are extending our reach to two new regions across rural Ethiopia.
Through a CA$19.7M contribution from GAC, PSI and MSI will implement PSI’s flagship adolescent sexual and reproductive health (ASRH) program in Ethiopia, Adolescents 360’s Smart Start, in 48 Ethiopian districts where the health system is weaker and the unmet need for contraception is higher among rural married girls aged 15-19. The investment comes on the heels of RISE, a project funded by the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation to integrate Smart Start into Ethiopia’s national Health Extension Program – bringing Smart Start to 1 million girls by 2025.
Smart Start introduces contraceptive counseling through financial planning, supporting young rural couples to understand the cost implications of having children before they are ready. Through the GAC-funded partnership, PSI will use Smart Start to lead demand generation for contraceptive services, while MSI will improve ASRH service delivery through their innovative mobile outreach model. The efforts will reach 500,000 girls with ASRH information and support 150,000+ additional girls to choose contraception by 2024.
Since the implementation launch in Jan. 2018 through April 2020, three in four girls have voluntarily chosen contraception through Smart Start; one in two girls will choose a long-acting method.