The Center for Reproductive Rights Africa Program uses the human rights and reproductive justice frameworks to address the root causes and systemic violations of the sexual and reproductive rights of women and girls in the Africa region.


Sub-Saharan Africa has the highest maternal mortality rate in the world, as well as high rates of unintended pregnancies, early marriage, and unsafe abortions—which result in thousands of preventable deaths.

The Center’s Africa Program works to document reproductive rights violations, hold governments accountable for such violations, and advocate for laws and policies that ensure access to the full range of reproductive health services and information.

Using human rights and reproductive justice frameworks, the Center works with a network of partners, lawyers and activists, and through courts and regional human rights mechanisms, to ensure all people can realize their reproductive and human rights—especially marginalized groups that face numerous obstacles to accessing health care and justice. The Center further works to strengthen the region’s sexual and reproductive rights movement through capacity building and creating spaces for solidarity, sharing and collaboration among diverse stakeholders.

The Center’s Africa Program has secured numerous legal victories in national courts and regional accountability bodies that have improved women and girls’ reproductive rights–including their access to contraceptives, abortion services, and maternal health care. The program has been building expertise in the region since 1997 and opened its regional office in Nairobi in 2011.

Key Facts


The maternal mortality rate in sub-Saharan Africa—the highest rate in the world.

6.2 million

Unsafe abortions each year in sub-Saharan Africa–resulting in 15,000 preventable deaths.

1 in 5

Adolescents become pregnant before the age of 19.

Cases and Work

Learn more about the Center’s work advancing reproductive rights in Africa.

Court issues sweeping decision in Center’s case of pregnant woman physically and verbally abused by hospital staff.

Ruling by African Committee marks a victory for adolescent girls in Tanzania and beyond.

Landmark ruling in case defending minor and clinician will protect abortion patients and providers from arrest and prosecution.

Publications and Resources

Follow the Center's Africa Program on Twitter/X card link

Follow the Center’s Africa Program on Twitter/X

Follow @ReproRightsAFR for news and updates from across the region.

Teenage Pregnancy in Africa—Status, Progress and Challenges (ACERWC Report) card link

Teenage Pregnancy in Africa—Status, Progress and Challenges (ACERWC Report)

This Center and its partners contributed to this report assessing teenage pregnancy and its impact. Read more.

Maputo Protocol at 20: Progress on Abortion Rights in Africa

This Center report tracks compliance of each of the 55 African countries on the Maputo Protocol’s article guaranteeing the right to legal abortion. Read more.

Abortion in Kenya card link

Abortion in Kenya

The Center’s work to advance abortion rights in Kenya since the adoption of the country’s 2010 Constitution. Read more.

Africa Reproductive Rights Initiative (ARRI) card link

Africa Reproductive Rights Initiative (ARRI)

The Center’s regional network to strengthen reproductive rights across Africa. Read more.

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