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Humanitarian policy and partnerships

United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA)

Quick and equitable scaling up of sexual reproductive health services during an emergency saves lives, empowers women, and expedites the recovery of a country following a disaster or crisis. In partnership with UNFPA, Australia prepositions sexual reproductive health and gender-based violence supplies throughout the Indo-Pacific region to enable rapid response to meet the urgent needs of women and girls following a disaster.

Since 2016, Australia has committed over $7.2 million to UNFPA to preposition life-saving supplies in disaster-prone countries, including Fiji, PNG, Tonga, Vanuatu, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Bangladesh, Philippines, Indonesia, Sri Lanka and Myanmar. It has reached over 168,000 direct beneficiaries with essential supplies in over 80 emergencies across 15 countries. Lifesaving items include clean delivery kits and equipment necessary for maternity and delivery facilities. Supplies also include basic hygiene items, such as soap and sanitary napkins, and items for protection including torches and whistles. These items help people to maintain a safe and dignified life during a crisis.

More information on the Regional Prepositioning Initiative

The COVID-19 pandemic saw widespread disruption to essential health and social services. Australia committed a further $4.5 million to UNFPA to support countries across the Indo-Pacific, including PNG and Indonesia, quickly scale up COVID-19 response efforts. Over 133,000 people accessed integrated sexual reproductive health services with this support and over 13,000 frontline healthcare workers were protected.

Blind woman being escorted.
Access and mobility for people with disabilities is already challenging in the Pacific, but it's even harder during disasters and the chaotic aftermath. UNFPA has been able to contribute to the disaster plans for countries like Kiribati by preparing kits that are adapted to the needs of people with disabilities. Credit: UNFPA/Carly Learson.


Group of women and children walking with big buckets of dignity kits.
Women return to their homes after receiving dignity kits distributed as a part of emergency flood response. Credit: UNFPA/Prince Naymuzzaman.
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