The Pfizer Foundation in New York City has announced grants totaling $5 million in support of initiatives and partnerships focused on providing family planning education for women and men at the same time their children are being vaccinated.
Building on the foundation's existing family planning and education program, the grants will support nongovernmental organizations in five African countries — Benin, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, and Uganda — where women face significant barriers to accessing such services. As of 2017, an estimated two hundred and fourteen million women and girls who would like to delay or avoid pregnancy were still without access to modern contraception, with the highest unmet need in sub-Saharan Africa.
The projects include an initiative with Save the Children to boost access to quality integrated childhood immunization and family planning services for women and children at integrated outreach clinics in three districts in southern Malawi; a partnership with the International Rescue Committee focused on improving integrated family planning and immunization service access and quality in Ethiopia and Uganda; a partnership with World Vision to increase the voluntary use of modern family planning methods and immunization in two districts in Kenya; and a program with CARE to improve the family planning counseling and clinical skills of healthcare providers in Benin, where the family planning needs of more than a third of women are unmet.
"At Pfizer, we support the belief that women around the world should have access to family planning services and information so that they can make informed decisions that are appropriate for their needs," said Pfizer Foundation president Caroline Roan. "We are proud to be expanding the Pfizer Foundation's support of this innovative approach to family planning, making it easier for underserved women to access family planning services at the same time their children receive critical immunizations to protect them against disease."