Engaging our community and dialoguing with members at the grassroot level about Family Planning is key to poverty eradication and family empowerment.
Once while working with ARDA & NURHI on the field going from house to house, business centers dialoguing and informing people better about the need to plan their families we met a group of men. It was interesting discussing the issue with these men, some agreed that couples should only give birth to the number of children they can cater for but one man’s opinion stood out. This man whom I will call Bode believed that a man has a right to keep giving birth to as many children as he desired. Then we raised the issue if how frequent and too many births can affect a woman’s health. The discussion then centered on the wellbeing of his wife; Bode believed that he would keep acquiring more women to give birth to more children.
I looked at Bode and it was obvious that he didn’t earn much. Bode like many others hold the cultural believe that the Lord Almighty who gives children will take care of them. I believe that God is the giver of children and he also makes provision to care for them. However he expects us to be responsible therefore he will also hold us, parents accountable if we do not train and equip our children with all they need to become responsible men and women in the society.
I see many women at the grassroot suffer and struggle to take care of children because their husbands/men are busy donating babies to as many other women. Forgive me if I sound rather hard here.
Then there are men who will insist that the woman(his wife) should just keep having as many babies as possible to the detriment of her health and the family’s wellbeing.
Family Planning means having the number of children one can care & provide for.
Family planning is key to preventing abortions.
Family planning has helped couples who didn’t know any better to stop aborting babies. I have met a few couples who were able to relax in between births before having another baby and no longer had to abort unplanned pregnancy.
Life is all about the choices we make. These choices in turn make us and our future.
Adebisi Adetunji (C)