September 26th marks World Contraception Day. Every Year, countries, communities and individuals around the world organize events to commemorate World Contraception Day and to demonstrate their commitment to raising awareness of contraception and improving education regarding reproductive health.
This year Yamaan Foundation will also take a part in the marking of this day by underscoring the importance of safe, affordable and quality contraception for women and girls in Yemen. Without access to and use of contraception women and men in Yemen are risking their health and even their lives.
Yemen has one of the highest maternal mortality rates in the world and the highest in the Middle East at 365 deaths per 100,000 live births. The mortality rate is much higher for teenage mothers because their bodies are not usually physically ready for childbirth so they are more likely to suffer obstructed labor and other serious complications. A recent KAP Study showed alarmingly that in certain parts of Yemen 48.7% of women were pregnant for the first time at 18 years of age and 26.9% even younger between 13 to 15 years of age. A fertility rate of 6.3 children per woman also contributes to the high maternal mortality rate.
The lives of women and girls can be saved through the use of contraceptives. Therefore it is imperative that there is a regular, reliable supply of pills, condoms, IUDs, implants and injections for women and girls within the country. Yamaan’s social marketing program ensures contraceptives are available in pharmacies, clinics, and hospitals around Yemen and trains healthcare providers on each family planning method. Providers can then counsel women and couples on the various contraceptive options, empowering them to make the best choice for their lives.
Contraceptives help couples plan for the birth of children by allowing them to decide the right time to have children. Factors influencing this decision can be the mother’s age, health and last pregnancy. Two years spacing is recommended between pregnancies. Contraceptives also allow couples to determine the best time for them to have children based on their financial situation.
On this day, Yamaan Foundation would like to encourage women and men to learn about the different contraception options available and speak to a health provider on which option is best for you and your partner.