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Bugarie Santé sexuelle et reproductive



of pregnancies are aborted

25 000

Roma people are living in Nadezhda ghetto

77 %

of Roma people have no social protection


For the last five years, Bulgaria has been caught in the grips of an economic and political crisis. In a country with death-in-childbirth and abortion rates twice as high as elsewhere in Europe (almost a third of pregnancies end in abortion in Bulgaria), this crisis is heightening the vulnerability of the most marginalised groups. 

The abortion rate is twice as high as elsewhere in Europe.

In Sliven’s Nadezhda ghetto, access to health care is particularly difficult for people from the Roma community, marginalised and living in conditions of extreme vulnerability. 77% of them have no social protection. In 2014, 185 young girls between 12 and 17 years of age gave birth at Sliven hospital. Although abortion is legal in Bulgaria, it is still expensive and, like contraception, is out of reach for most of Nadezhda’s population. 


What we do


A woman and her three children in Nadezhda ghetto, Sliven, Bulgaria © Gaelle Girbes
A woman and her three children in Nadezhda ghetto, Sliven, Bulgaria © Gaelle Girbes

In 2015

We helped:

  • 1,200 people through the youth information and counselling centre (CIO)
  • 120 women by providing free contraception
  • 27 community leaders by involving them in the activities.

Doctors of the World has been working in the ghetto since 2004. We now run a youth information and counselling centre that focuses on sexual and reproductive health. People visiting the centre are taught about family planning and their right to access public health services, and can also obtain modern birth control methods (IUD, pill, condoms) free of charge. Our purpose is also to get families out of the ghetto for gynaecology and family planning consultations in town. People from other poor villages in the surrounding area can also attend the centre for counselling and support.

125 470 €
Launch of a project in Nadezhda ghetto to improve the inhabitants’ living conditions.
Action focused on hygiene, immunisation and sexuality.
Opening of the youth information and counselling centre (CIO).
Town council agrees to fund family planning consultations for women counselled by Doctors of the World.

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