A wide range of social responsiveness activities have been achieved by the Women's Health Research Unit.
Members of the Unit have been active in researching and advocating for development and implementation of policies and programs that improve the health of women (e.g. cervical cancer screening, termination of pregnancy, contraceptive guidelines). Information on women's health has been provided through written and verbal communications, with a wide range of professionals, researchers and activists in women's health. Research reports and policy briefs on the Unit's research findings have been widely distributed.
In our research projects the WHRU endeavours to involve non governmental and community based organisations in problem definition, research implementation, analysis and the utilisation of findings. We also actively contribute to community awareness of public health issues through articles and letters published in local and national newspapers and through talks on local radio. These latter include talks presented live on Bush radio focussing on reproductive rights and health of HIV positive individuals and on cervical cancer in the community.
Members of the Unit initiated and played a supportive, consultative and resource role for women's wellness and primary health care activities within community health projects at Zibonele in Khayelitsha and in Mamre. The Zibonele project has since been incorporated into the Zanempilo community health project, and Unit members continue their involvement as trustees on the Zanempilo Board.
The Unit has collaborative links with the Planned Parenthood Association of South Africa (PPASA) and our members serve on the PPASA's Provincial Committee and participate in their community-based contraceptive distribution task team.
Our members are involved in the People's Health Movement (PHM), a large global civil society network of health activists supportive of the WHO policy of Health for All and organized to combat the economic and political causes of deepening inequalities in health worldwide and to call for the return to the principles of Alma Ata. A Unit member is a trustee of the Mediteam Board - an international organization that promotes and supports the introduction of medical abortion services.
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