CARE has been working with garment factories to improve the health and well-being of workers since 1998 through effective partnerships with brands, retailers, factories, and public and private donors. There are 550,000 female garment/footwear factory workers in Cambodia and 40 million in Asia, mostly poor migrants with low education, vulnerable to unwanted pregnancies and unsafe abortions. Unplanned pregnancies result in workers taking additional sick days or leaving the factory, which affect production. Unplanned pregnancies result in workers seeking abortions, which can harm their physical or mental health, particularly if they choose an unsafe method.
Supporting women to control when they have children enables them to prioritise their own health and focus on earning an income to support their families. Chat! is a holistic model for promoting healthy sexual choices, supporting access to reliable reproductive health services and preventing unplanned pregnancies. Chat! - CARE is adopting a market-based approach to sell the package to private sector partners – brands, vendors, and factories – and plan to scale through Cambodia and regionally.
CARE Cambodia uses the Scale X Design challenge funding over the 18 months to make Chat! available as a fee based service to all factories in Cambodia. The broad plan is to start by testing the market, determining offerings and fees, and establishing a presence and reputation with Chat! still housed at CARE Cambodia, with the support of an advisory board. At the same time, we will begin development of a spin-off entity or social enterprise, including a viable business plan
Chat! aims to improve the health of garment factory workers though empowering women and men to make healthy sexual choices, access reliable reproductive health services, and prevent unplanned pregnancies.
Project activities include:
1. Product improvement, materials/equipment of Chat! Contraception package, consists of:
a)SESSIONS: short, targeted activity-based sessions that provide key information on communication and consent, contraception, sexually transmitted diseases, and safe abortion;
b)VIDEOS: engaging dramas featuring characters in a fictional garment factory that engage workers’ emotions as they relate to the everyday challenges of characters; and
c)MOBILE GAME: an interactive mobile application that challenges workers to prove and improve their understanding of reproductive health topics. The complete package increases workers’ knowledge, confidence, and awareness so that they are empowered to take control of their lives and make healthier choices.
2. Conduct the marketing to the customers – a combination of brands, retailers, vendors, and individual factories.
Chat! Contraception was created by CARE Cambodia with funding from the Australian Government as part of Partnering to Save Lives.
Jul 2017 - Dec 2018
16,000 workers across 31 factories in Cambodia