Since the start of the programme, UAFC has been working on overcoming obstacles and problems by implementing a holistic and innovative programme. It has successfully worked with three mutually reinforcing components:
- Procurement, Manufacturing Support & Regulatory Issues;
- Large scale country programmes, with Population Services International affiliates in Cameroon, Nigeria and Mozambique;
- Advocacy, Linking & Learning and Communication.
Implementation of all these three components is done in cooperation with an extensive network, consisting of civil society organizations, private sector organizations, international, intergovernmental and governmental institutions.
This has had the following results:
- The UAFC Joint Programme stimulated variety and competition by supporting two manufacturers to increase their production capacity and by instigating a functionality study to get WHO pre-qualification for new female condom designs. In July 2012 the Cupid Female Condom received prequalification from WHO/UNFPA and is now available for procurement by UN and donor agencies. It is expected that at least 2 more female condom designs will be prequalified by the end of 2013 and thus become available for the international market.
- In Nigeria and Cameroon well functioning supply chain systems were set up, as well as women-friendly sales and distribution points.
- Successful engagement of stakeholders in the country programmes include large NGOs, CBOs, Women’s Organisations, Faith Based Organisations, local and national governments, UNFPA and international donor agencies.
- An International Advocacy Platform was set up, consisting of over 50 members, representing a wide range of organisations and nationalities. This had led to increased collaboration, coordination and synergy between public, private and civil society stakeholders.
- Targeted international advocacy increased visibility of and attention for female condoms, resulting in placing female condoms (higher) on the international agenda, the inclusion of female condoms in policy documents and a shift in position of UNFPA and WHO towards acknowledgement of the need for variety in female condom distribution and programming, including support for the functionality study and in-kind contribution of 4 million condoms to the UAFC programme in Nigeria. Advocacy efforts have also lead to decreased skepticism surrounding female condoms and to the UAFC programme becoming a brand in itself.
- In 2011 the UAFC Joint Programme was successfully externally evaluated.
- In 2011 external research by the Amsterdam Institute on International Development on male views and perception on female condoms led to a comprehensive report with useful recommendations for female condom programmers.
- The female condom has been included in the list of the three main underfunded and underutilized reproductive health commodities as has been put together for the UN Commission for Live Saving Commodities for Women and Children.