Access to health is a fundamental human right as outlined in Article 43 (1) of the Constitution of Kenya 2010 which states that: Every person has the right-to the highest attainable standard of health, which includes the right to health care services, including reproductive health care; Despite this provision in the law, women and girls with disabilities in Kenya, still face numerous challenges in access to sexual and reproductive health. The myths and misconceptions attached to their sexuality often hinders them from acquiring quality sexual and reproductive health services, they are denied the right to express their sexuality through forced and arranged marriages, forced sterilization, forced and unsafe abortion as well as denial of sexual and reproductive health information and education which creates a gap in their health and increases the susceptibility of untreated sexual and reproductive health illnesses.
Women and girls with disabilities, are turned away from sexual and reproductive health and rights, their sexuality is often overlooked and they are viewed as “sick people “who need to heal first before expressing their sexuality may be considered a low priority, or may not be provided with accessible education and information material. Negative attitudes from health providers also hinder women with disabilities from accessing right information on sexual and reproductive health.
Inaccessibility in health facilities remains a challenge from lack of ramps, lack of support for alternative modes of communication, such as sign language, Braille, and simplified easy-to-read and adapted tools. In the context of sexual and reproductive health and rights, women with disabilities may experience attitudinal barriers relating to the expectation that they are not sexually active and therefore not in need of such services.
Any person with a disability may be sexually active and in need of services; women and girls with disabilities may need such services even more, as they have less decision-making power and autonomy to negotiate safer sex. The combination of discrimination based on disability, gender, sexual orientation may compromise access to services.
As a result of our processes over 100 healthcare providers from Kisumu, Kakamega, Busia, Tana River, Kwale, Kilifi, Mombasa, Kiambu and Nairobi have completed their #SRHRplusD training for healthcare providers program successfully.
Long term Goal
To increase access to quality sexual and reproductive health services and information to women and girls with disabilities in Kenya.
Short term Goal
To support various stakeholders to gain knowledge on disability rights and inclusion through our SKILLS elearning platform.