• Patrick Segawa

    Public Health Ambassadors Uganda | Programme Coordinator

    This blog post was originally published by Public Health Ambassadors Uganda.

    PHAU storytelling workshop participants

    Storytelling is a powerful way to share the personal, human stories behind the global family planning movement.

    Family Planning Voices is a global storytelling initiative led by the Knowledge for Health (K4Health) Project and Family Planning 2020 (FP2020). FP Voices provides a platform for people who are passionate about family planning—and whose work or lives are affected by family planning—to tell their stories in their own words.

  • Bheki Vilane

    CCP | Senior Technical Advisor, Community Engagement

    This post was originally published by the Health Communication Capacity Collaborative.

    Indvuna Michael Magongo

    According to Indvuna Michael Magongo, “The norm that a man should marry a very young girl because women age fast is no longer supported in our community.”

    “We as traditional leaders cannot watch young girls acquire HIV and be exposed to sexual abuse in the name of marriage.”

    Michael Magongo lives in a deeply rural village in Swaziland known as Bhadzeni Chiefdom. He, like the rest of the villagers, is a subsistence farmer growing corn and beans. He is married and, somewhat unusually, has only one wife.

  • Sarah V. Harlan

    CCP | Learning Director

    This post was originally published by the Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs.

    Halima Shariff, Director, Advance Family Planning Tanzania, Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs, leads a panel with donors at the Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition reception at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in Seattle, Washington.

    Halima Shariff, Director, Advance Family Planning Tanzania, Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs, leads a panel with donors at the Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition reception at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in Seattle, Washington.

    Last week, along with several other colleagues from the Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs (CCP), I attended the 17th General Membership Meeting of the Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition (RHSC) in Seattle, Washington. In addition to collecting interviews for the Family Planning Voices initiative, which we co-lead with Family Planning 2020 (FP2020), we also had the opportunity to think about how communication fits within the complex world of supply chain management.

  • Windkouni Fidèle Bonaventure Ganemtore

    Family Planning Youth Ambassadors of Burkina Faso | Secretary General
    A young Burkinabe girl cares for her sick little brother in Koudougou, Burkina Faso.

    A young Burkinabe girl cares for her sick little brother in Koudougou, Burkina Faso. © 2012 Mohamad Syar/CCP, Courtesy of Photoshare

    The Family Planning Youth Ambassador Program in Burkina Faso focuses on raising awareness about family planning and reproductive health services among our country’s youth. We’ve engaged a lot of young people on the topic, but, as this testimonial from a young woman named Chantal shows, we were unintentionally leaving out many young people, namely married adolescents and out-of-school youth.

  • UNFPA

    United Nations Population Fund

    This post was originally published by UNFPA.

    Three women with their children in Far Western Nepal. All of the women were child brides.

    Three women with their children in Far Western Nepal. All of the women were child brides. © UNFPA Nepal/Santosh Chhetri

    BAITADI DISTRICT, Nepal – A girl’s astrological birth chart can hold the keys to her future in this remote corner of Far Western Nepal. And in the right hands, this is a good thing.

    When parents bring their daughter’s “cheena,” a chart made according to the Hindu astrological calendar, to 66-year-old astrologer and priest Dev Dutta Bhatta, he pays close attention to the birth year. If the girl is underage, he advocates for her parents to wait until she is an adult before arranging her marriage.

  • Smita Gaith

    Population Reference Bureau | Policy Analyst

    This post was originally published by PRB.

    Men fishing off Rusinga Island, Kenya.

    Men fishing off Rusinga Island, Kenya. © Ryan Harvey, 2007. Licensed under Creative Commons: CC BY-SA 4.0

    Integrated approaches to development are gaining traction, especially as the global development community observes the one-year commitment to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which highlight the interrelated relationships between many development sectors. One such integrated approach is known as Population, Health, and Environment (PHE), which seeks to provide voluntary family planning, improve people’s health, and conserve the environment in rural communities in an integrated, multisectoral manner.

  • Monique Clesca

    UNFPA | Former Représentante
    Leyla is now 21, with a four-year-old son named Salim.

    Leyla is now 21, with a four-year-old son named Salim. Photo by Mina Kaci.

    She was like an earthquake: shaking everyone around her to the core, exposing their fault lines, damaging their usual demeanor, and challenging their beliefs in what should be the order of things. Unlike other huge natural phenomena like typhoons and hurricanes, earthquakes don’t have names—but this one did, because it was a positive earthquake. It was called Leyla.

    Leyla is the new normal for girls in Niger. A girl of 18 who spoke her mind, she was at the youth center to talk about how she benefited from an eight-month empowerment program for adolescent girls to reduce child marriage and teen pregnancy. Leyla had been chosen to speak because she had completed a program called Illimin, which in Houasa means “the knowledge.” Developed by UNFPA, Illimin has since become the flagship program of the government of Niger and is a successful model of what works in adolescent empowerment and child marriage and teen pregnancy reduction.

  • K4Health Highlights

    Elizabeth Futrell

    CCP | Content Development Lead
    David Alexander, Liz Futrell, and Sarah Harlan pose for a pre-interview selfie with Dr. Tlaleng Mofokeng, 120 Under 40 winner from South Africa.

    David Alexander, Liz Futrell, and Sarah Harlan pose for a pre-interview selfie with Dr. Tlaleng Mofokeng, 120 Under 40 winner from South Africa. Photo by David Alexander.

    There’s no better way to take the pulse of a movement than to listen to what its youngest leaders have to say. Last week, K4Health and FP2020’s Family Planning Voices initiative did just that in New York City, when we interviewed the 2016 World Contraception Day Ambassadors and several winners of 120 Under 40: The New Generation of Family Planning Leaders about their commitment to expanding awareness of and access to contraception and related services to underserved populations. We spoke with young leaders from Uganda, India, Trinidad & Tobago, Canada, Lesotho, Poland, Vietnam, Egypt, South Africa, Nigeria, the Philippines, Kenya, and the U.S. about the work they’re being recognized for and their priorities for the future. While their countries, backgrounds, disciplines, and programs are diverse, several common threads that highlight the innovation that young people are bringing to the movement emerged from our conversations.

  • Melissa Wanda Kirowo

    Management Sciences for Health, Kenya | Advocacy and Communications Project Officer
    The Expectation Wall is a good and standard KM practice for any lengthy meeting. Participants “set expectations” at the beginning and then (hopefully) move them over to the “expectations met” area.

    The Expectation Wall is a good and standard KM practice for any lengthy meeting. Participants “set expectations” at the beginning and then (hopefully) move them over to the “expectations met” area. Photo: Melissa Wanda Kirowo

    Earlier this year, I had the privilege of attending the knowledge management (KM) share fair in Arusha, Tanzania. After much reflection and many attempts at integrating some of the KM models that I learnt from the share fair in my work, I realized something very important: We have to be willing to learn how to learn to get the best out of what KM has to offer. What does this mean? Consider the following…

  • Ashley Lackovich-Van Gorp

    Regional Center for the Advancement of Women and Girls (Mercy Corps) | Director; Enhance Worldwide | Founding Executive Director; Girls' Globe | Blogger
    Girls making crafts at an ECHO-funded youth center in Jordan's Zaatari camp.

    Girls making crafts at an ECHO-funded youth center in Jordan's Zaatari camp. Photo credit: © EU/ECHO/Peter Biro via Flickr. Licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

    Zahra is a 14-year-old girl living in Jordan. When she was five years old, she dreamt of going to school. When she was ten and in school, she dreamt of becoming a doctor.

    At 12 years old, Zahra fled Syria with her family. As refugees, her parents encountered a life of unprecedented instability and poverty. Desperate to secure a future for his daughter, Zahra’s father arranged for her to marry a man in his 20s. Zahra protested, but she had no other options: She wasn’t in school, her family couldn’t afford to feed her, and she had no way of earning an income on her own. Given this desperate situation, she married an adult man before she was old enough to drive a car or vote. At age 14, she became a mother.

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