Rutgers and Dance4Life have been working together for several years to improve the sexual health and rights of young people worldwide. Improving those rights is desperately needed, as unsafe sex is still the fastest growing health risk for young people worldwide. For example, complications around pregnancies are the #1 cause of death for girls aged 15 to 19 years old. Our organizations overlap in vision and mission.
Rutgers is a center of expertise that increasingly focuses on successful approaches concerning young people and sexuality, and has the ambition to focus even more specifically on young people, while also developing more entrepreneurship. In 2017 Dance4Life took a new direction by setting up a franchise model and developing a contemporary empowerment model for and by young people, which empowers and mobilizes them to make their own and safe sexual choices. In the coming years Dance4Life wants to scale up its unique way of connecting to young people’s experiences and worldviews. Together we have the ambition to collaborate to create a win-win for our work and for young people.
Joining forces is particularly important at a time when there is a strong international counter movement that hinders our work, seeking to block young people’s sexual health rights and access to information and services. Attention and funding for our work is also under pressure, especially with the new focus on and demands of the Covid-19 crisis. By working together as SRHR organizations, we can achieve greater impact.
Rutgers and Dance4Life therefore intend to collaborate more intensively in the future, while retaining both brands and their strengths. We expect that both our corporate cultures can further stimulate each other. We will investigate the potential for collaboration in more depth in the coming months and expect to make a final decision shortly after summer.