This issue of Quality/Calidad/Qualité tells the story of a group of Brazilian women who came together in 1981 with the shared belief—not as widely understood then as it is now—that conventional approaches to women's health and family planning services were overly medicalized, incapable of dealing with the relationship between sexuality and contraception, and disempowering to clients. They started the Coletivo which runs a clinic, a training institute, and a public education program that has “given voice” to thousands of women, provided leadership to the Brazilian government and women’s health movement, and has been active in research and international policy affairs. The group set out to enable individual clients to know their own bodies, make their own choices, and recognize their own rights. Twelve years later the Coletivo continues to create new ways to provide services and involve women in the care of their own health. Through their work the members of the Coletivo show us what can be achieved if we are willing to accept the challenge.
Diaz, Margarita, Debbie Rogow, and Jose Barzelatto. 1995. "The Coletivo: A feminist sexuality and health collective in Brazil," Quality/Calidad/Qualité no. 6. New York: Population Council.