In Bolivia, women, children and young people lack proper access to education, healthcare and other public services. Solidar Suisse helps them to be better involved in their communities.
Poor access to education
In Bolivia, women, children and young people continue to be severely disadvantaged. They have extremely poor access to education, healthcare and other public services. The mortality rate among girls and women is significantly higher than that for men and the difference in education levels is high. In many cases, issues such as teenage pregnancy or domestic violence remain taboo.
Improve public participation
Solidar Suisse is convinced that practicing living democracy is the best way of improving public participation and public service. We therefore support women and young people who fight for their concerns to be addressed. We promote exchange between communities in order for others to learn from successful projects run in other communities.
In addition, our fictitious Solidar character Doctora Edilicia answers questions from the population via social media – for example, what can citizens do if their communities come across cases of corruption? The platform is used actively. Doctora Edilicia is known across the country and very popular.
Capitalising on our good networks in Bolivia, we have recently started strengthening the capacity of civil society with regard to dialogue with state institutions. We provided funding that NGOs and networks could compete for.
Since 2020, Solidar Suisse has developed digital platforms to enable communities to hold regular discussions, including during the pandemic.
«Sometimes people in the street call me Doctora Edilicia. I don’t mind – on the contrary, it shows how successful our campaign is. It is very important for people to participate in political discussions at the community level, because they are the ones who are most directly affected.»
In total, 30 communities took part in the PADEM democracy project. In recent years hundreds of thousands of people have benefitted from better schooling, more comprehensive healthcare and from anti-violence measures.
Some communities promoted the use of computers in primary schools or improved cervical cancer screening for women. Others have committed to fighting violence against women or have set up programmes to address the issue of teenage pregnancy. Many communities face particularly significant challenges in times of Covid-19. Solidar Suisse supports them to become better connected with departmental governments and to make more use of e-government tools.
What can be done about cancer? Young women inform themselves at a stand.