What is Contraception?
There are a number of methods of
contraception ranging from male and female condoms to hormonal pills,
contraceptive implants, injections and intrauterine devices. Contraceptive
methods like condoms also help prevent sexually transmitted diseases (STDs)
The type of contraceptive method
used depends on the individual's preference. The safety of contraceptive
methods should be evaluated with a doctor's advice before proceeding with a
This global campaign was launched
in 2007 with the vision that every pregnancy should be "wanted." World Contraception Day
(WCD) is observed on 26th September every year to increase awareness about contraception and safe sex
campaign has been disseminating critical information to enable young people
make informed choices when it comes to sex, pregnancy, sexual health and
The rationale behind WCD is to
prevent the physical and psychological trauma from unwanted pregnancies.
According to statistics released by the Alan Guttmacher Institute (AGI), New
York, four in ten pregnancies are unplanned of which half end in abortions. In
developed nations, of the 28 million pregnancies each year, approximately 49%
are unplanned and 36% end in abortions
developing nations, of the 182 million pregnancies each year, approximately 36%
are unplanned and 20% end in abortions.
According to the AGI president
Jeannie I. Rosoff, women all over the world take measures to terminated
unplanned pregnancies and we must respect these decisions and ensure safe
abortion when it is a choice made by the woman.
While around 26 million women
have legal abortions each year, around 20 million have illegal abortions.
Conditions and laws regarding abortion differ across the globe and several
countries prohibit abortions (except to save the woman's life). In several
countries, religious laws prohibit abortion. Such prohibitions lead to women
seeking illegal abortions, which are unsafe and often practiced by unauthorized
quacks. The World Health Organization (WHO) defines unsafe abortions as
"procedure for terminating an unwanted pregnancy either by persons lacking the
necessary skills or in an environment lacking the minimal medical standards, or
both." Abortions by unauthorized people and in unsafe, unhygienic conditions
lead to complications and deaths.
Unwanted pregnancies and unsafe
abortions affect the general and reproductive health of women globally. The WCD
campaign is committed to improving reproductive health of women in both
developed and developing nations through awareness campaigns in collaboration
with local governments and NGOs.
WCD is currently supported by a
coalition of 12 international NGOs and health and medical societies working in
sexual and reproductive health. The NGOs which are a part of this campaign are:
Pacific Council on Contraception (APCOC)
Latinamericano Salud y Mujer (CELSAM)
Society of Contraception and Reproductive Health (ESC)
Stiftung für Weltbevölkerung (DSW)
Federation of Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology (FIGIJ)
Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF)
Stopes International (MSI)
Services International (PSI)
United States Agency for International Development (USAID)
Your Life, It's Your Future, Know Your Options"
This year's theme is meant to
convey to young people across the globe that pregnancy is an individual choice
and there are options available to prevent unwanted pregnancies. Young people
are encouraged to exercise their right and use contraception for safe sex and
better reproductive health. Unwanted pregnancies and STIs
physical and psychological health.
In several countries where cultures forbid discussions of
sex and related issues, such campaigns pitch in to keep young people informed
and educated about the need for safe sex and safe pregnancies. Campaign
partners across the globe work with communities to discuss the issue of
contraceptives and also provide demos and samples.
This year's WCD theme has its own
website http://www.your-life.com/ which discusses several issues and answers
questions around contraception. WCD 2015 also has a digital campaign with the
hash tag #AFriendOfMine.