Responding to the shocking events of early 2022, when Russia invaded Ukraine, was at the heart of our work throughout the year. We stayed in close contact with our Member Association in Ukraine as they continued to operate in the harshest of contexts, IPPF helping to support the delivery of essential sexual and reproductive health (SRH) commodities into the country. We also secured funding to establish a humanitarian network with 17 partner organisations to ensure life-saving sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) care for people in need in Ukraine, especially the most marginalised, as well as refugees arriving in neighbouring countries. We were humbled as our national partners, many already facing intolerable pressures from their daily fight against the backlash on SRHR and women’s rights, mobilised to join the humanitarian response. IPPF launched a fund-raising appeal to raise funds for Ukraine, and we moved swiftly to alert European Union (EU) decision-makers and raise awareness via international media, helping ensure SRHR was at the heart of the EU’s crisis response.
In June, we were deeply saddened when the US Supreme Court overturned Roe v Wade, removing 50 years of constitutional protection for abortion in the biggest blow to women’s health and rights in recent US history. We mobilised together with civil society partners and our national networks to ensure widespread European condemnation of the US move and warn of potential spill over effects on women’s rights globally. We were heartened to see decision-makers in some European countries double down on strengthening national protections for abortion rights.
Against the backdrop of these external crises, we were excited to kick off the implementation of our first operating grant under the European Commission’s Citizens, Equality, Rights and Values Programme, strengthening our ongoing work to contribute to a more gender equal society. In 2022, we reinforced our support to national social movements countering the backlash against gender equality and human rights. We continued to advance a progressive EU agenda that upholds rights, democracy and the rule of law, and combats gender-based violence (GBV). And we ensured growing numbers of young people are empowered and kept safe from harm by learning crucial skills relating to sexuality and relationships. We also centred a gender transformative lens in all aspects of our own work, from policies to language to programming.
In June, we were thrilled to lead the Countdown 2030 Consortium in beginning a new phase of its mission to hold European donors to account for commitments on SRH and family planning, thanks to a new 4-year grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Meanwhile, on our Federation’s 70th anniversary in November, IPPF Member Associations from around the world unanimously adopted “Come Together”, a new global strategy 2023-28 that will equip us to uphold SRHR for those who are left out, locked out or left behind in a rapidly changing world.