Rutgers is an international centre of expertise on Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) founded and based in the Netherlands. Our research and many of our projects are carried out in the Netherlands and most primary and secondary schools here use our sexuality education packages. Our expertise is also applied worldwide. We support our partners internationally (across Europe, and in Africa, and Asia) to improve sexual and reproductive health and the acceptance of sexual rights and gender equality in their countries. We approach sensitive issues in a positive way and have gained a wealth of experience in making sexuality, and sexual and reproductive rights a topic of discussion within different cultural contexts.
We supervise most of our international projects from our head quarters, working closely with our implementing partners and providing hands-on support when needed. Additionally, we jointly develop programmes, strategies and activities with our offices in Pakistan, Indonesia and Uganda. In 2013 we closed our office in Vietnam.
We select our partners in Africa and Asia carefully. We prefer to liaise with local civil society and government organisations with experience working on Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights. In some cases we work together with Dutch NGOs such as Oxfam and Simavi.
Technical Advisors: Our Technical Advisors develop educational material, methods and training modules, based upon health education models. They are experts in a variety of specific fields and are regularly invited to speak at conferences and debates.
Researchers: Our researchers (many from the field of psychology with a PhD) are nationally and internationally renowned for their research in the context of social sexology. They regularly publish articles in leading scientific journals.
Advocates: Our advocates work together with policy makers, parliamentarians, and a worldwide network of NGOs and civil society organisations in order to realise both progressive SRHR policies and sufficient funding for them.
Facilitators: Our professionals in the support divisions such as Finance, Communications, Fundraising, Human Resources and Facilities Management enable the smooth management and implementation of our projects. These members of staff also fully support our mission to improve Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights for all.
We receive funding annually from the Dutch Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport to, among other things, support comprehensive sexuality education in schools, the sexual and reproductive health of vulnerable people and the reintegration of people who have committed acts of sexual violence. In close cooperation with partner organisations we regularly submit programme proposals to the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs. For example, Rutgers is one of the participants of the SRHR Alliance ‘Unite for Body Rights Programme’ funded by the Dutch co-financing system MFS-II (2011-2015). MFS-II is the grant framework of the Dutch government for Dutch civil society organisations involved in international development.
While funding by the Dutch government provides us with a large source of income, we are always seeking partnership with other donors to improve the sexual and reproductive health in the Netherlands and elsewhere.
We receive funding from private funds in the Netherlands and internationally, for example, the Dutch Postcode Lottery, the world’s second largest private charity donor. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation are examples of International Foundations that we have submitted proposals to. In addition, we regularly submit project proposals for calls from the EU and the World Bank.
Rutgers has consultative status with ECOSOC. At special sessions of the United Nations, such as the Commission on Population and Development (CPD) and the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW), we may submit a written statement and are also often scheduled to speak. In this way, we can express our views on relevant topics.
Memberships and ISO
Rutgers is a member of the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF). We have acquired ISO certification and in 2014 the Rutgers quality management system was again approved by Lloyd's Register Quality Assurance according to the ISO norm 9001:2008. The present certificate will expire in March 2017. Rutgers has also been assessed for the Partos 9001 norm and will be granted the Partos 9001 certificate.
In 2010, Rutgers was established after a merger between the World Population Foundation (WPF) and the Rutgers Nisso Groep, the Dutch Expert Centre on Sexuality. Together we have a rich history in the Netherlands – starting as far back as 1881 - and an impressive reputation and network internationally.