Gates Foundation announces support for global family planning initiative
July 12, 2012
At the recent London Summit on Family Planning, which was co-hosted by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the United Kingdom Government's Department for the International Development, a new set of commitments was made to help more than 120 million females in the world's poorest countries access voluntary family planning services.
Estimated at a cost of approximately $4.3 billion, the efforts will provide contraceptive supplies, education and services to women and girls in more than 20 countries by 2020. Currently, as many as one in four girls living in Sub-Saharan African aren't able to finish their education due to an unintended pregnancy. This initiative is expected to have a significant impact, reducing the number of unplanned pregnancies by 110 million, the number of first-year infant deaths by 3 million and the number of women who die during pregnancy or childbirth by 200,000.
"When I travel and talk to women around the world they tell me that access to contraceptives can often be the difference between life and death," said Gates Foundation co-chair Melinda Gates. "Today is about listening to their voices, about meeting their aspirations, and giving them the power to create a better life for themselves and their families."
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