A married couple in India carefully reviews a pamphlet on family planning methods. © 2014 Lindsey Leslie, Courtesy of Photoshare
Today is International Women’s Day, and organizations around the world are commemorating the day by discussing a range of topics, including gender parity, women’s empowerment, and girls’ education. We at K4Health believe there is one thread that ties all of these topics together: family planning.
Family planning has the potential to delay pregnancy so that girls can stay in school longer. Beyond this, involving men and boys in discussions about contraception can improve interpersonal communication and can also lead to shared decision making related to reproductive health. This, in turn, can help reduce gender gaps, both at the household and societal level. If more women are supported to make decisions about whether and when to have children, they will be more likely to finish school, achieve higher economic status, and have better access to job opportunities generally dominated by men (governmental positions, for example).