Goal and objectives
The main objective of ICRH is to improve sexual and reproductive health in its broadest sense. To this end, ICRH seeks to improve the acceptability, accessibility and quality of sexual and reproductive health services, and integrates a human rights based and gender sensitive approach in its analysis.
Approach to sexual and reproductive health
ICRH fully adheres to the recognition of reproductive health as a basic human right of all men and women, including children and adolescents, throughout life. Through its research, training, interventions and advocacy, ICRH aims to contribute to the promotion, protection and fulfillment of these rights. ICRH holds that the achievement of the ICPD goal of universal access to sexual and reproductive health services is key in the fight against poverty.
The multidisciplinary approach of ICRH in tackling problems related to sexual and reproductive health integrates medical analysis with political, legal, social, cultural and economic considerations. ICRH also seeks to contribute to the improved accessibility of a wide range of sexual and reproductive health services by integrating the following emphases in each of its projects:
• family planning and contraception;
• safe motherhood, including aspects related to unwanted pregnancies;
• sexually transmitted infections, including HIV/AIDS and cervical cancer;
• discouragement of harmful practices such as female genital mutilation and early marriages;
• sexual and gender-based violence, prevention and response.
ICRH pays particular attention to the impact of gender inequalities on sexual and reproductive health (SRH) and the benefits of promoting male involvement with the aim of improving both men and women’s SRH status.
ICRH also aims to contribute to the empowerment of vulnerable groups such as poor women, adolescents, sex workers, migrant and refugee populations by providing these groups with the means of making informed and responsible decisions concerning their sexual and reproductive health.
To fulfil various objectives, ICRH collaborates with a wide variety of governmental and non-governmental actors at the community, national and international level.
Since 2004, ICRH has officially been appointed as a Collaborating Centre of the World Health Organisation.
Services and expertise
Staff members of ICRH are based in Belgium, Kenya and Mozambique. They operate in the health, social, judicial and anthropological sectors. Because ICRH is based within a university, the centre can call upon resident experts in order to widen its competencies in the areas of statistics epidemiology, laboratory biology, and multiple domains of the social sciences.
The services provided by ICRH include:
• Design, planning, development, monitoring and evaluation of sexual and reproductive; health programmes and projects;
• Support of sexual and reproductive health initiatives;
• Contribution to policy dialogue;
• Development of European and North / South networks;
• Support of South / South networks;
• Training and supervision of health workers;
• Organisation of courses, seminars, workshops and conferences;
• Operational research;
• Research on policies and legislation;
• Consultancies in the field of sexual and reproductive health for various stakeholders.