In London on 11 July on the same day as World Population Day, the UK Government and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will host the Family Planning Summit. They will come together with the European Commission, European donors, developing country governments, UN agencies, the private sector, and civil society to raise funds for voluntary family planning.
There are hundreds of millions of women in developing countries who want to delay or avoid a pregnancy but are not using an effective method of family planning. The Summit aims to provide an additional 120 million women in the world’s poorest countries with access lifesaving contraceptives, services and information by 2020. Increasing access to family planning information, services and supplies has dramatic health benefits for women and children, preventing up to a quarter of maternal deaths. It is also an extremely cost effective investment towards the achievement of the maternal and child health Millennium Development Goals and wider development outcomes. And yet, global attention and leadership on this issue has been lacking.