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Powered by Partnership: PAI’s 2023 Year in Review

Analysis Nabeeha Kazi Hutchins, President and CEO

Dear Colleagues,

As we approach the end of the year and I reflect upon the progress and impact in 2023, I am thankful and proud of what PAI and our partners have accomplished and inspired.

This year the PAI team, our donors, partners and extended network of 1,800 community-based advocacy organizations in over 60 countries stood arm in arm to face the challenges to sexual and reproductive health and rights, elevate urgent calls to action, and move forward courageously and in solidarity.

We advanced our U.S. government and global advocacy for sexual and reproductive health and rights. Together with fellow US advocacy organizations, PAI remained steadfast and resolute in holding the U.S. government and international institutions accountable for delivering funding and supportive policies that advance the rights, agency and autonomy of people around the world.

We convinced 125 Representatives and 37 Senators to endorse a near tripling in current U.S. funding for international FP/RH to $1.74 billion, the U.S. “fair share” of investments necessary to meet the unmet need for modern contraception of 218 million women in low- and middle-income countries (although we remain at a standstill on the actual approved funding amount given the complexities in Congress this year).

We advocated for and supported the reintroduction of the Support UNFPA Funding Act with 115 House sponsors and the Global Health, Empowerment and Rights Act with 156 House and 50 Senate sponsors.  In addition, PAI published 20+ U.S. policy briefs and analyses that advance evidence and data to fuel and foster advocacy efforts and hold the U.S. government accountable for supporting abortion access, menstrual health, family planning, gender equality and youth rights.

We engaged in global dialogue and with intersectional leadership.  PAI and partners took to the global stage and reminded donors and policymakers that advancing sexual and reproductive health and rights is at the core of achieving gender equality, economic prosperity, health equity and resilience.

We continued to engage in important spaces where PAI and our fellow advocates have traditionally participated, but also expanded our presence and the conversations with nutrition, gender equality, finance, WASH and climate leaders.  From the World Bank Spring Meetings in Washington, D.C. and Women Deliver in Kigali to the SDG Summit in New York and The Micronutrient Forum in The Hague, PAI team members and partners grew and gained from an important network of intersectional champions who recognize that progress for their respective mandates requires advancing sexual and reproductive health and rights.

We demonstrated the impact of advocacy through the efforts and impact of our partners and community-based advocates around the world.   With a vibrant and diverse network of advocates working on the frontlines of research, policy, community engagement, health systems and financing, youth rights and more, progress was achieved despite the threats and changes in our SRHR landscape.

Through our transformational partnership with the World Bank’s Global Financing Facility (GFF), PAI designed a transparent process to award a total of $2.75 million in grants to 51 civil society (CSO) and youth-led organizations (YLO) in 28 countries so that sexual, reproductive, maternal, newborn, child, adolescence health and nutrition (SRMNAC-N) priorities be reflected in effective real-world policies, budgets and health programs.

Thanks to our long-standing partnership with the Hewlett Foundation, we realized important results from a five-year, ten-country initiative designed to increase government accountability for delivering on domestic family planning budgetary commitments. Because of this CSO-led initiative, Benin saw a 430% increase, Malawi a 9% increase and Tanzania a 10% increase in contraceptive commodities funding and allocations.  In addition, health worker salaries and health systems services also improved in many cases.  Data from the recent round of FP Scorecards can be found via the following country links: Benin, Burkina Faso, Malawi, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia.

We stayed united and vigilant.  The efforts of the anti-rights opposition and the significant threats and changes to the landscape resulted in PAI and our partners having to double down on our commitments, do more with our resources and expand our collaborations despite the challenges and uncertainties.

Our partners saw the influence of the opposition movement in Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania and they continued to rally together to mitigate harm and advance coalition-style strategies to fight back. In addition, PAI continued to deepen and enhance connectedness across our network of partners through learning and exchange opportunities, including webinars, PAI Partner Matters e-newsletter, regional gatherings, and topic-specific events.

We know that in this time, strengthening and protecting our ecosystem of advocates is ever more critical. Fragmentation dilutes our collective impact, and the investment in the collective will ensure that progress is not derailed. As such, we stayed and will continue to stay united.

We thank you.  For 58 years, PAI has been working to advance universal access to sexual and reproductive health and rights through advocacy, partnerships and the funding of changemakers.  Our five-decade journey and the achievements this year would not have been possible without the incredible PAI staff and our esteemed board of directors, donors, partners, consultants, and families and friends.  Each of you inspires us to achieve our urgent mission with courage.

While 2024 will require much of all of us, we will continue to further our mission knowing that you remain by our side.  Thank you for your voice, commitment and dedication.  Here’s to the power of partnership!

Happy holidays and my most heartfelt wishes for the New Year.

In solidarity,

Nabeeha Kazi Hutchins
President and CEO

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