September 26 is World Contraception Day. There are more than 220 million women in this world who want to be able to space their pregnancies but simply don’t have access to contraception or other family planning options.
When women have access to voluntary family planning options it does so much more than giving them freedom to space their children. It has a direct effect on improving education and economic empowerment. When young women can delay childbirth, even slightly, they are more likely to receive an education, raise their standards of living, and climb out of poverty.
It’s cost-effective and a great investment: spending one dollar on family planning can save governments six dollars in other health care costs. It also improves environmental sustainability because it allows for better management of natural resources like firewood, water, and homegrown food.
Voluntary family planning options help break the cycle of poverty, and put families, communities, and countries on a stronger, more prosperous and sustainable path. In short, allowing women have options should they want them on when, and how many children to have, helps them make progress on all the global goals.
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Also be sure to check out the Universal Access Project. They work to advocate for greater support and commitment in the United States for family planning around the world.
Photo credit: Universal Access Project