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Family Planning Is Women Empowerment

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Monday, July 27th, 2020
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pregnant black woman

Women are one of the important resources of any nation and society. Women have the right and capacity to work, earn and fend for themselves and their family according to the constitution of Nigeria. However, the reproductive gender roles of women have positioned them in a situation of having selected the option to choose in term of career job, business umpire, educational attainment, etc. From the period of conception when during the first trimester, most women fight different forms of health issues which differ from one to the other. To the period of delivery and then nursing and nurturing. The productivity of women is not always at its peak during all these period which makes some employees prefer not to hire women. These factors also affect women who are self-employed because their businesses may not get adequate attention required to maximize productivity and growth.

In this article, we will be discussing how Family planning could be a form of women empowerment strategy. For women to be self-reliance and financially independent, they need to understand the importance of plan parenthood, child’s spacing and child’s limit (i.e number of children that the woman can cater well for) which is achievable only through Family planning.

When we talk about women empowerment what comes to an average mind is financial or material empowerment which are just parts or types of empowerment. Women empowerment is about rights, representation, responses, choices and resources. The World Bank defines empowerment as the “expansion of freedom of choice and action to shape one’s life. This definition encompasses two features of women’s empowerment: the process of change (through which a woman gains power in making decisions) and agency. Kabeer defines women’s empowerment as a “process by which those who have been denied the ability to make strategic life choices acquire such ability. This definition involves resources and achievements. Empowering women through access to Family planning could bring some benefits which are not limited to the following.

  • Fertility target/choice: The ability to control the number and timing of births may benefit married women because couples are able to better achieve their optimal fertility targets and make informed decision.


  • Children Welfare: women are always compassionate and more concerned about the welfare of their children. having the power to choose the number of children to have and when to have them will help women to cater well for the needs of their children maximally.


  • Higher employment opportunity: In particular, women’s labour market opportunities may expand as they are better able to control fertility, thus leading to higher wages and potentially increased labour market participation through a substitution effect (Aaronson et al., 2017).


  • Increase women decision making power: In addition to higher wages, a relative increase in the wages of women compared to their husbands may also raise women’s bargaining power within their households, increasing women’s decision making power, including decisions regarding household expenditures and fertility.


  • Increase in Life Expectancy rate: Lower maternal morbidity and mortality under family planning will help to increase women’s life expectancy rate.


  • Female education: family planning is a form of empowerment for women that will enhance the possibility of girl-child education because the family will have fewer children to care for.


  • Health Benefit: the reduction of health-related crisis a result of overstressing the body system in the process of continuous childbearing which may not be instantaneous but could come up even at old age.

Ultimately, a woman who can plan her family is better able to plan her life. For example, norms related to women being passive and men being assertive or aggressive can lead to men making decisions about sex in a relationship or marriage. Other norms support the notion that family planning, including contraception, is the sole responsibility of women and girls because they are most affected by the effect of overbearing childbearing and rearing. Women empowerment programs should be re-strategized to a form of household empowerment that will help women decide on appropriate family size through increased sensitization and easy access to family planning services in all communities.



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