Carlsbad, CA, September 13, 2023 – After more than a decade of dedication to increasing access to critical sexual and reproductive health products and services in the global South, Catalyst Global (formerly WCG Cares) announces its decision to cease operations in 2024.
The global health landscape is becoming increasingly complex as we all grapple with competing priorities and urgent needs worldwide. Delays in the availability of new funding and limited investment in R&D for women’s health created an increasingly difficult environment for resource mobilization. These realities prompted Catalyst Global’s Board of Directors to make the difficult decision to wind down the organization.
In recent years, Catalyst Global has been at the forefront of driving change, providing comprehensive technical assistance to product developers, manufacturers, NGO partners and ministries of health worldwide, with a focus on sexual and reproductive health. The organization played a pivotal role in increasing access to more than 16 reproductive health products in over 90 different countries, working with a team of experts spanning public health, social marketing, pharmaceuticals and medicine.
“As committed members of the Catalyst Global team, we extend our heartfelt gratitude to our partners and colleagues for the privilege of working together to improve women’s health worldwide,” said Shannon Bledsoe, Executive Director of Catalyst Global. “Although we are saying farewell as an entity, each of us as individuals continues to be dedicated to making quality reproductive health products and services available to the girls and women around the world who need them.”
Over the past ten years, Catalyst made significant contributions to improving access to essential health products and services in the global South, including through its USAID-funded Expanding Effective Contraceptive Options (EECO) project and consortia. Through EECO, Catalyst and its partners championed the introduction of novel and underutilized contraceptive methods such as the hormonal IUD, which is now being scaled in several countries.
The impact of accessible, high-quality sexual and reproductive health products and services underscores the need for ongoing efforts to develop new and enhanced technologies. These advancements provide people with choices to safeguard themselves against unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections, including HIV. “We know that our mission remains urgent and unfinished and each of us looks forward to continuing our individual commitment in new endeavors, partnerships and future roles,” says Bledsoe.
In the months ahead, Catalyst Global will begin to scale down its operations while reflecting on lessons learned and sharing insights within its extensive community of partners.