Here’s giving you some background on the faculty leaders of the Women’s Health, Masculinity and Empowerment: Policy Advocacy Training course that MenEngage Africa, Sonke Gender Justice and the UCGHI Center of Expertise on Women’s Health and Empowerment are currently running at the Botswana National Productivity Centre, in Gaborone, over the next two weeks. First up is the course Director, Dr Paula Tavrow.
Dr Paula Tavrow is the co-director of the University of California’s (UCLA’s) Centre of Expertise in Women’s Health and Empowerment. The centre is driven by the belief that advances in women’s health globally are impeded by poverty, limited access to educational and economic opportunities, gender bias and discrimination, unjust laws, and insufficient state accountability.
These forces intersect to restrict access to vital women’s health services and the information that women need to improve their lives. By prioritising women’s health concerns, rights, and empowerment, this Centre of Expertise is uniquely poised to catalyse societal-level changes that will yield sustainable improvements in health and well-being for women on a global scale.
Dr Paula Tavrow is also the Director of the University of California Bixby Programme in Population and Reproductive Health and Adjunct Associate Professor in the Community Health Sciences Department at the UCLA School of Public Health. Her current research interests centre on adolescent reproductive health, coerced sex and the quality of primary health care in East Africa.
Prior to joining UCLA in 2002, Dr Tavrow was the Deputy Research Director for the USAID-funded global Quality Assurance Project (1997-2001). She oversaw eleven operations research projects to improve the quality of rural health services in Kenya, Malawi, South Africa, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
She has also served as a women’s health advisor and researcher at the University of Malawi’s Centre for Social Research (1993-95), a USAID health officer who helped design Tanzania’s National AIDS Control Programme and National Family Planning Programme (1987-90), a USAID assistant food for peace officer who assisted Ogadeni refugees in Somalia (1984-86), and a project evaluator for nutrition activities in the Bandundu region of Zaire (1984). She received her AB (magna cum laude) from Harvard-Radcliffe College, her MALD from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, and her MSc and PhD from the School of Public Health at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.
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