Within the “Health Inequities regarding Romani Women” project, NRC conducted a research on the access offered and the services Romani women use in periods of pregnancy, birth and nursing.

A reality is women members of the Roma community who lack conditions and opportunities to look after their health due to numerous reasons: inequality, continuous discrimination, illiteracy and unemployment, a fact that puts them on the edges of a society.

Also, unequal access and unequal opportunities are problems Romani women face with during pregnancy and motherhood. In these periods, reproductive health, qualitative health care as well as social well-being are of an enormous importance in a life of every young mother. The report from the focus groups and the interviews provide data on perception, opinions and experiences from these periods of Romani women from the five target towns of Kumanovo, Shtip, Kriva Palanka, Kochani and Bitola.

The same included specific recommendations by women members of the Roma community from the target towns and from officials of institutions at national and local level.

The Republic of Macedonia is one of the signatory countries of the Decade of Roma in 2005 together with other 8 countries from South-Eastern Europe. All counties took on an obligation to come up with and achieve practical solutions to improve the situation of Romani people in the 4 priority areas of employment, education, housing and health. It was recommended to devote a special attention on improving the situation of Romani women in all these areas.

Civic associations and initiatives have been taking actions for some time to become sensitive and to discuss the question of the vulnerable position of a Romani woman. Also, efforts to identify reasons and to find solutions that directly influence on improvement of the situation of Romani women in the priority areas are made.

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