Tens of millions of women and girls in poor countries are quickly embracing modern contraception with Africa topping the list according to the Family Planning 2020 organization. Of 926 million women and girls of childbearing age, 314 million of them in 69 countries have adopted contraceptive methods like pills, condoms, birth control implants. Of the 69 countries in the report, 41 were Africa. Globally the number increased by 2% while East Africa and Southern Africa grew by 7%.
FP 2020 is a self-described global movement founded by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the British government, works with several governmental and non-governmental partners to promote its goals of getting 120 million new contraceptive users by 2020.
“The use of modern contraceptives is growing fastest here in Africa. Family planning is like a basic right. It gives women a means to pan their life. They can stay in school when they avoid unwanted pregnancies. They can space pregnancies to participate in economic activities. In many places, even if you resolve things like funding of family planning, or supply chain unless you also work with communities and women to actually understand what contraception is, there will be a barrier to uptake,” said Benoit Kalasa a representative of the United Nations Population Funds.
The governments seemed increasingly focused on integrating family planning into health policy aimed at overcoming logistical challenges, cultural and religious barriers. Currently, there is an International Conference on Population and development ongoing in Nairobi, focusing on demographics and reproductive rights.