Partner Spotlight: Family Planning Can Level the Playing Field for Women Everywhere

By: Suzanne Ehlers, President and CEO, Population Action International

Like many Americans, I just completed the annual ritual of filing my taxes.

In the process, I noticed, as some of you might have, the box asking whether I wanted to donate $3 of those taxes to the presidential election campaign fund. The fund helps pay for presidential election campaigns, and is designed to level the playing field for candidates.

Now, I don’t know how many people check that box or how much money it brings in. But it got me thinking… What if there was a box for international family planning? If you could allocate $3 of your taxes to women around the world, would you check that box? Read more...

Partner Spotlight: Unsafe Abortion—The Preventable Public Health Crisis

By: Sharon L. Camp, President and CEO of The Guttmacher Institute

An estimated 40 million abortions took place in the developing world last year. Most of these procedures were clandestine and unsafe, taking a terrible toll on women’s lives. Every year, 47,000 women die from unsafe abortion and millions more are injured—some seriously and permanently. These deaths and injuries are almost entirely preventable. Read more...

Partner Spotlight: Ensuring Real Contraceptive Choice Through a Robust Supply Chain

By: Saundra Pelletier, CEO of WomanCare Global

As a new member of the Women Deliver Board of Directors and as CEO of WomanCare Global, I am so looking forward to attending the May 2013 Women Deliver meeting.  We will be thousands of voices strong, united in our call to bring women better choices for improving their health. In particular, I am eager to learn more about the work so many organizations are doing in family planning.

Less than a year ago many of us assembled in London for a groundbreaking family planning summit, where we committed ourselves to mobilizing resources so that an additional 120 million women and girls in the world’s poorest countries receive family planning information, services and supplies by 2020. Read more...

Women Who Dare: Jill Sheffield Helps Make Maternal Health a Global Priority

By: Jaime-Alexis Fowler, Associate Director of Public Relations and Online Communications at Pathfinder International; Originally posted on Pathfinder International

This post is part of Pathfinder's "Women Who Dare" series in celebration of International Women's Day 2013.

Jill Sheffield is the founder and President of Women Deliver, an international advocacy organization dedicated to advancing political action around and investment in maternal health. Jill is a tireless advocate for women’s health who credits her time spent in a Kenyan maternity hospital as the inspiration for her work. Jill’s daring work has been a contributing factor to increased international attention to maternal mortality, an area of continued need given the stalled progress on lowering maternal mortality.  Read more...

Global Leaders To Call For Action On Maternal & Reproductive Health At Women Deliver 2013 Conference

High-level participants join program for advocacy organization’s landmark meeting in Kuala Lumpur
A number of influential leaders are confirmed to participate in the Women Deliver’s third global conference, Women Deliver 2013, which will take place on May 28-30 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Speakers at the conference will include:

  • Melinda Gates, Co-chair, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
  • Michelle Bachelet, Under-Secretary-General & Executive Director of United Nations Women
  • Helen Clark, Administrator, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
  • Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin, Executive Director of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA)
  • HRH Crown Princess Mette-Marit of Norway
  • Dr. Hans Rosling, Professor of International Health, Karolinska Institute; Co-founder & Chairman, Gapminder Foundation


What’s Your Method?: A Blog Series on Contraception

By: Gary Darmstadt and Monica Kerrigan; Originally posted on Impatient Optimists

What's Your Method? is a blog series featured in the Impatient Optimists, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation blog. The series offers a window into many of the contraceptive options for women and girls around the world. Each day, the series will publish one or more posts on these methods from some of partners working everyday to ensure that these methods truly become options for the millions of women and girls who want and need them. Read more...

My Hope for 2030: Universal Access to Contraception

By: Dana Hovig, CEO of Marie Stopes International; Originally posted on Impatient Optimists

Bill Gates recently asked people to tell him their hopes and dreams were for 2030. For me there can only be one: that by 2030 we are finally living in the golden age of family planning. One in which everyone has access to whatever type of contraception they want, no matter where they live or what their circumstances are. If we are to reach this golden age though, we must keep an ever watchful eye on results and impact, and make sure family planning services are available to the people who need them most. Read more...

2012 Was a Year for Women and Girls: Will We See the Same Momentum in 2013?

By: Purnima Mane, President and CEO of Pathfinder International; Originally posted on Huffington Post

In March of this year, on International Women’s Day, I asked, “Is 2012 the Year for Women and Girls?”  Now, as the year winds to a close, I find myself looking back on my call for stronger partnerships, more global coalitions and wondering, are those enough? 2012 was a year for women. We saw tremendous renewal of the commitment by world leaders to ensure that countries and communities have the political support and financial resources needed to improve access to sexual and reproductive health. Read more...

FP2020 Reference Group Launched to Advance Family Planning Commitments Made at London Summit

Leadership group announced for the landmark Family Planning 2020 partnership to help provide an additional 120 million women and girls in the world’s poorest countries with access to voluntary family planning information, contraceptives and services.

NEW YORK: Eighteen leaders from civil society, governments, multi-lateral organizations, technical institutions and foundations are participating on the “Reference Group” for Family Planning 2020 (FP2020). The partnership was a key outcome of the London Summit on Family Planning convened by the UK Department for International Development and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in collaboration with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) on July 11, 2012. Read more...

WHO Recommendations Enable More Health Workers for Maternal and Newborn Health

The most recent World Health Organization publication, Optimizing Health Worker Roles to Improve Access to Key Maternal and Newborn Health Interventions Through Task Shifting, recommends that governments enable more health workers below the level of doctor to deliver vital maternal and newborn healthcare services, including family planning. Read more...

Women Deliver Opens Media Registration for Groundbreaking Conference on Girls and Women

Advocacy organization’s third triennial global conference in May 2013 will draw 5,000 policymakers, researchers and advocates to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

New York, NY, December 6, 2012—Media registration is now open for the Women Deliver 2013 conference, the largest meeting of the decade to focus on the health and empowerment of girls and women. This landmark event expects to draw 5,000 leaders and advocates to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia from May 28-30, 2013. The 2013 conference, which will be hosted for the first time in Asia, follows Women Deliver’s historic conferences previously held in London in 2007 and Washington, D.C. in 2010. Read more...

Women Deliver Congratulates IPPF on its 60th Anniversary

Today, the International Planned Parenthood Federation celebrates its 60th year of advocating for girls and women’s reproductive health. IPPF began work in 1952, when 8 family planning organizations joined forces. Now, IPPF operates in 172 countries and delivers millions of services, making it the largest sexual and reproductive health and rights organization in the world. Read more...

Fred Sai: The Godfather of Family Planning

By: David Holmes; Originally posted on The Lancet

On Nov 14, the United Nations Population Fund released The State of World Population 2012: By Choice, Not By Chance: Family Planning, Human Rights and Development. Fred Sai is that slogan made flesh; he is the godfather of family planning. In a career spanning over 50 years, Sai has served as population director at the World Bank, is a past president of the International Planned Parenthood Federation, and chaired the main committee of the pivotal 1994 International Conference on Population and Development in Cairo. Now semi-retired, the 88-year-old still finds time to sit on the boards of Women Deliver and Population Action International. The Lancet caught up with Sai to find that, after more than half a century of involvement in family planning, his passion burns as fiercely as ever. Read more on The Lancet...

Delivering a World Where Every Pregnancy Is Wanted

By: Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin; Originally posted on Global Motherhood, Huffington Post

The ability to decide when to have children, and how many, is seen as one of the most significant social advances of recent decades. However, this quiet but profound revolution has not yet touched all parts of the world equally. Over half a century after modern family planning programmes began to be extended widely across the globe, millions of women are still denied access to them. Read more...

Additional Investments in Family Planning Would Save Developing Nations More Than $11 Billion a Year

Access to family planning is an essential human right that unlocks unprecedented rewards for economic development, says new UNFPA report

  • 222 million women in developing countries have an unmet need for family planning
  • Additional $4.1 billion in funding is needed to address current needs and those of the growing youth population

LONDON, 14 November 2012—Making voluntary family planning available to everyone in developing countries would reduce costs for maternal and newborn health care by $11.3 billion annually, according to The State of World Population 2012, published today by UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund. Read more...

Women Deliver’s Jill Sheffield at BSR Conference 2012

Women Deliver President Jill Sheffield recently spoke at the BSR 2012 Conference session on ‘Women’s Health: A Missing Sustainability.’ She and Worldwatch Institute President Robert Engelman discussed the links between women’s reproductive rights and sustainability. In this video from the conference, Jill highlights the significance of investing in women; “Women are consumers. Women are producers. They’re not just reproducers.” Read more...


Celebrate Solutions: Jordanian Media Campaign Increases Family Planning Use

By: Yousra Yusuf, Women Deliver

Today, at least 222 million women worldwide have an unmet need for modern contraceptives.  Family planning is a proven life-saving solution with the power to avert 70% of maternal deaths, yet many people around the world do not have access to the contraceptive information and services they need.  This past year in Jordan, the USAID-SHOPS national media campaign was introduced to increase oral contraceptive use among women. The campaign has already seen promising results—there has been a 33% country-wide increase  in oral contraceptive pill sales. Read more...

The Critical Role of Women in Sustainable Development

By: Jill Sheffield, President, Women Deliver and Robert Engleman, President, Worldwatch Institute

Jill Sheffield and Robert Engelman will discuss the links between investing in women and achieving sustainability goals in “Women’s Health: A Missing Sustainability Issue?” on Friday, October 26 at the BSR Conference 2012.

In June 2012, the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, or Rio+20, convened more than 100 heads of state to begin development of Sustainable Development Goals (SGDs), which would reduce poverty while preserving the environment. Unfortunately, the conference missed a historic opportunity to affirm the critical link between investing in women and achieving sustainability goals. Read more...

World Contraception Day: Myths Block Contraception among Young People

By: Numfor Alenwi, Women Deliver 100 Young Leader from Cameroon




This blog is part of a series, edited by Women Deliver, in partnership with Impatient Optimists, on youth perspectives to celebrate World Contraception Day. Share your thoughts in comments and join the conversation at #WCD2012. For more stories and to get involved further visit No Controversy.

For young people in my country, the need for comprehensive education is needed to overcome myths and misconceptions about contraception. In Cameroon, only 37% of the demand for family planning is satisfied. Read more...

World Contraception Day: Emergency Contraception in the Caribbean

By: Ife Smith, Women Deliver 100 Young Leader from Trinidad and Tobago



This blog is part of a series, edited by Women Deliver, in partnership with Impatient Optimists, on youth perspectives to celebrate World Contraception Day. Share your thoughts in comments and join the conversation at #WCD2012. For more stories and to get involved further visit No Controversy.

In Trinidad and Tobago, the rates of teenage pregnancy and HIV prevalence are quite high. The adolescent birth rate in Trinidad and Tobago is 33 births per 1,000 girls aged 15-19, and there were 15,000 people living with HIV in 2009. Statistics show that at the end of 2009, an estimated 240,000 people were living with HIV in the Caribbean.

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