In Southern Nigeria and parts of Northern Nigeria, A360’s 9ja Girls provides unmarried girls aged 15-19 with a forum to gain the skills and knowledge to know that their lives are theirs to make.
9ja Girls is implemented in Nigeria by PSI independent network member SFH/Nigeria.
Girls served with modern contraception
Sites across 9 states
% of girls voluntarily adopting a method after engaging with A360
% of girls voluntarily taking up a long-acting method
Data from Jan. 2018 through July 2020.
In Southern Nigeria, three in 10 girls want but don’t have access to modern contraception. Across the nation, 1 in 4 pregnancies among this age group will end in an abortion, many of which are unsafe.
Girls across Nigeria face deep cultural and societal challenges in accessing contraceptives. A360’s 9ja Girls works within the complexity of this system to meet girls aged 15-19, and their influencers, where they are and how they need.
Getting Girl Centered
A360 flips traditional family planning messaging on its head— building from what girls say they want to deliver reproductive health services when and how they need.
Click the below breakouts to explore the insights that shaped how A360 is changing the conversation around contraception.
Insight: Girls have a lot of questions about their bodies, but aren't sure who to trust.
During formative research, girls expressed a deep desire for and urgency to care for themselves amidst changing times. At the same time, girls told us that they faced gaps in trusted sources to turn to access the health information and services girls need to make decisions about their bodies and lives, today.
9ja Girls Safe Spaces are stigma-free, allowing girls to seamlessly gain skills; ask questions, share and learn; and access SRH services. Because 9ja Girls providers value girls’ choices and respond to their individual needs, they become a trusted adult in girls’ lives. Counseling is opt-out, so it becomes normalized.
Insight: Adolescent girls want to finish school or learn a trade, but also dream of getting married and having a child. Parents believe early marriage protects moral standards.
9ja Girls connects contraception use as means for girls to make their lives their own—reaching their self-defined dreams, while making their families proud.
Insight: Parents, and mothers specifically, often do not feel free to talk to their daughters about sex due to culture and religion.
By offering vocational skills classes, parents and influencers support having 9ja Girls Safe Spaces in their community and encourage adolescent girls to participate. Community acceptance creates the enabling environment necessary for girls to access sexual and reproductive health services.
Insight: Providers often lack knowledge of methods or impose their personal beliefs, like abstinence first, onto their clients.
To strengthen method mix and address providers’ ingrained biases, A360’s 9ja Girls integrated the “Choice Book Method” into contraceptive counseling. The approach leads with what matters to girls, including the most effective methods for girl’s needs, the possibility for side effects and reassurance for return to fertility. Since incorporation in June 2018, 9ja Girls has recorded increased uptake of LARCs and injectable, from 15 percent in June 2018 to 20 percent in September 2018.
9ja Girl's Approach
Click the below breakouts to explore our approach.
We create safe spaces for girls to learn skills for life, love and to achieve her goals.
By blending adolescent developmental science with social marketing, cultural anthropology, Human-Centered Design and Adolescent and Youth Sexual and Reproductive Health (AYSRH), 9ja Girls reaches and inspires girls through love, life and health classes. Girls engage in vocational skills training before transitioning to opt-out contraceptive counseling in public health clinics, providing girls with friction-free and on-site counseling with youth-friendly health providers.
9ja Girls Safe Spaces are stigma-free, allowing girls to seamlessly gain entrepreneurial skills to support their desire for financial independence; ask questions about their bodies and lives; and access AYSRH services in service of girls’ self- expressed need to navigate changing, complex times.
We blend targeted mobilization and community-based advocacy to reach out to and serve girls.
Reach out events merge mobilization to create an enabling environments followed by public health center-led service delivery hosted within communities. Communities are identified based on existing unmet need and areas with support from community gatekeepers. Providers receive an abridged youth-friendly health service delivery training.
"I'm a 9ja Girl. My life is mine to make."
“My life is mine to make.
My heart may break,
but I won’t fake.
My body is mine,
no one can take.
I’m a 9ja Girl.
The tagline, “My life is mine to make,” celebrates a girl’s agency to own the decisions that shape her life. It’s a mantra that resonates with girls, and delivers a narrative embraced by providers and the community, at large.
From life mapping to contraceptive counseling.
Providers discuss each girl’s Life Map as an entry point into contraceptive counseling, linking how the methods might help her achieve her goals. Providers and counselors use the 9ja Girls Methods Talk and Methods Box as standardized tools ensure consistent messaging, while demystifying the methods to ensure girls can make informed reproductive health choices.
We foster an enabling environment to pave pathways for girls' access to contraceptive counseling.
Fostering an enabling environment is integral to 9Ja Girls’ long-term sustainability. We conduct outreach and advocacy activities to raise awareness and support from the ground up. This includes bi-monthly sessions with mothers of adolescent girls, involvement and collaboration with policymakers and key influencers and social media marketing.
Voices from the Field
“The moment she picks up a method, she radiates with confidence. She knows that come what may, her life is in order.”
"9ja Girls has transformed my life. You’ve given me the privilege to achieve my dream.”