The United Nations sanctioned World Population Day in 1989 to raise awareness about population and its effects on development and the environment. Important issues as diverse as family planning, gender equality, poverty, maternal health, and human rights all touch on population.
More than 18 months into the COVID-19 pandemic, the world is in a transitionary phase. Certain regions of the world are emerging from the depths of the pandemic. Other regions continue to be hampered in their fight against the coronavirus due to a lack of access to vaccines. Against this backdrop, this year, World Population Day highlights the pandemic’s impact on fertility.
At a recent meeting convened by the United Nations, experts stated that the pandemic appears to be lowering fertility in the developed world. Fertility in much of the developing world does not appear to be affected. According to the US Census Bureau, the world population reached 7 billion in 2012 and will reach 8 billion in 2025.
FINCA recognizes the impact population issues have on vulnerable communities. And FINCA continues to help developing countries address these issues through programmatic, technical, and financial assistance during these unprecedented times.
The COVID-19 pandemic restricted women’s access to family planning information and services around the world. The impact has been most pronounced in low-income countries and marginalized communities.
The pandemic also wrecked health systems around the world, including sexual and reproductive healthcare. Family planning and contraceptives are among the most disrupted services. Decision-makers had to reallocate resources and sometimes close institutions. These actions severely limited access to essential health services for women in several countries.
Supporting the human rights and wellbeing of women and girls around the world is crucial in addressing these population-related issues. At FINCA this means stepping up efforts to educate and economically empower women. It also means eliminating discriminatory behaviors and practices that disadvantage women, something FINCA targets through its programs as well as through its hiring and training programs in the countries in which it works.
While the COVID-19 virus claimed millions of lives around the globe, FINCA recognizes that population issues persist. And many issues related to population are most severe in developing countries. As such, FINCA will remain focused on adapting its programs and projects to address issues related to population, most importantly women’s rights and women’s empowerment.