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Strong Girls Today, Powerful Women Tomorrow

On this International Women’s Day Plan International Timor-Leste strengthens girls’ and women’s voices, their right to Sexual and Reproductive Health and their Economic Empowerment.


  Girl holding Smartphone with Application Reprodutiva

With the new smartphone-application ‘Reprodutiva’ Plan International brings girls, technology and sexual health together. Reprodutiva is an application that provides a safe and confidential space for girls and boys to ask questions about Sexuality and Reproductive Health that are being answered by professional staff from partner Marie Stopes Timor-Leste (MSTL). ‘Reprodutiva’ has been developed together with the Ministry of Health and MSTL and is the first App of its kind ever developed in Timor-Leste. After successfully piloting it since June 2017, the Application is now officially launched on Friday, 9 March 2018 during a workshop in Dili with students, government officials and the Spouse of the President of Timor-Leste, Cidália Lopes Nobre Mouzinho Guterres.

Through 'Reprodutiva' girls and boys can ask questions about Sexuality and Reproductive Health

The Application offers important opportunities for young Timorese as Dillyana Ximenes, Country Director of Plan International Timor-Leste, explains: “We are very glad that we are able to provide this important service so young people can learn more about their own bodies and about sexuality. Our research has shown that knowledge about Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRH) is very limited among young people in Timor-Leste and this application is a great way to tackle this issue and thus also tackle related problems such as teenage pregnancy and early marriage which are highly prevalent in Timorese society.”

The Application REPRODUTIVA is available for Android in Google PlayStore and can be downloaded from the website

New Girls’ Alliance Leads Advocacy on Girls’ Issues

Within its programming Plan International also advocates among power holders and duty bearers for the rights of women and girls to decide freely and for themselves about their own bodies and to make their own life decisions. Of course, the most important voices to be heard on these issues are the voices of women and girls themselves. This is why Plan International Timor-Leste is establishing a Girls’ Alliance at the local level in Aileu and at the national level in Dili.

Girls and Boys become advocates and lead change

The Girls’ Alliance enables 250 girls and 100 boys to lead campaigns and advocacy activities themselves and it empowers them to become agents of change by jointly taking action on issues that girls face. “This programme makes sure that girls and also boys are aware of their rights, that they have the self-confidence to speak up and that they are the ones leading this process of change”, says Etha Mota, Programme Manager of Plan International’s Women’ and Girls’ Participation Programme. 

Saying YES! to Youth Employment Solutions

On the occasion of International Women’s Day Plan International is also strengthening its commitment to further support Youth Economic Empowerment, especially in rural areas in Timor-Leste. In order for youths to develop their skills and employability, Plan International Timor-Leste is piloting the YES! Academy, an innovative tool for Youth Employment Solutions.

Through the YES! Academy youth develop their skills and employability

The YES! Academy is an open and free online platform developed by Plan International that allows youth to follow trainings on different topics. The trainings will be available in Tetun and youth can follow courses in life skills to build their confidence, as well as vocational training classes. “With the YES! Academy we will be able to reach people from marginalized background, they will be able to improve their skills and get better access to the job market which is highly important for the young generation in Timor-Leste”, explains Programme Manager Etha Mota.

Empowering Girls to Learn, Lead, Decide and Thrive

Looking at Plan International Timor-Leste’s innovations on this International Women’s Day, Country Director Dillyana Ximenes concludes: “All three innovations, the application ‘Reprodutiva’, the Girls’ Alliance and the YES! Academy are truly empowering girls who are the people at the heart of our work. Through this work we continue our action together with partners and communities so that girls in Timor-Leste can learn, lead, decide and thrive.”