The Ministry of Health in collaboration with UNFPA and other partners has launched a “Family Planning Week” in various communities in Montserrado County, distributing contraceptives, including condoms, pills, and injections, among others to teenage girls, students and young mothers to avoid unwanted pregnancy.
Speaking Wednesday, 14 October amidst heavy downpour during the launch on Mandela Field in Point Four, a slum community in the Borough of New Kru Town on Bushrod Island, the coordinator for family planning at the Ministry of Health, Ms Sarah Layloel, disclosed that a 2007 demographic health survey conducted in Liberia revealed that people using or subscribing to family planning were less than those having children. She said the ministry therefore embarked on a campaign to educate residents on family planning methods or child spacing in order to have healthy babies. She said the services are in six counties, including Nimba, Bong, Lofa, Grand Bassa, Margibi and Montserrado, respectively. The “Family Planning Week” which has been ongoing simultaneously in Duazhon and King Gray communities along the Robertsfield highway in Margibi County besides Point Four community on Bushrod Island, is expected to end tomorrow, October 17, with the theme, “Have your baby by choice, not by chance.”
If you are not ready to have children, come to family planning for pills, injections and other contraceptives to help you avoid unwanted pregnancies”, Ms. Layloel urged. During the exercise, eager community residents, particularly young girls and students answered questions about family planning and sought information on the various contraceptives, including whether they have side effects. Other partners at the launch were Plan Parenthood Association of Liberia (PPAL) Brac, Montserrado County Health Team, Clinton Health Access Initiative and USAID/Deliver Project. Making remarks, UNFPA Assistant Resident Representative, Dr. Philderald Pratt, thanked the various partners for being supportive of the campaign and told the residents the services were at their door step so they should come out and take advantage of them. “Please make use of the services; it is going to run from now to Saturday”, Dr. Pratt urged.
By Jonathan Browne