IMPROVING REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH
UNFPA in 2001 provided assistance to 141 developing
countries and countries with economies in transition.
Women attending a reproductive health workshop
in Matsana, a village near Matagalpa, Nicaragua.
A third of all births in villages in the area are to
girls under 19, some of them as young as 12.
Photo: UNFPA/Alvaro Serrano
As the world's largest international source of population
assistance, we work among all cultures at various stages
of development, with a special commitment to the poorest
and most vulnerable populations and the least developed
Our mandate to achieve universal access to
reproductive health by 2015 is carried out at the global,
national and local levels with many valued partners.
Better reproductive health depends on being able to
exercise the right to decide freely and responsibly the
number and spacing of children.
Family planning has
been one of the great success stories of development, yet
even today more than 350 million women do not have
access to a choice of safe and effective contraceptive
At least 120 million women want to use family
planning methods but lack access to information and
services or the support of their husbands and communities.
UNFPA supports voluntary family planning programmes
that bring about healthier and smaller families,
empower women to make choices and encourage men to
take a responsible role as caring partners.