Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Private partners back government's new family planning strategy

MAASIM, Sarangani (October 19, 2010) – The local government andprivate sector here have supported the national government’s renewedadvocacy for family planning.

United States Agency for International Development’s (USAID)HealthPRO, the provincial government and partners Conrado andLadislawa Alcantara Foundation, Incorporated (CLAFI), RD Foundation,Conal Holdings Corporation and Dharmendra Khumar Tiagi (DKT) haveidentified their model couples in family planning.

The ceremonial distribution and launching of family planningcommunication package by HealthPRO in Kabatiol village Tuesday,October 19, was followed by interactive lecture among poor couples whoare also beneficiaries of Pantawid Pampamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps).

In June 21, 2010, Department of Health Secretary Esperanza Cabralendorsed a new family planning communication strategy throughdistribution of a new set of communication materials “that aims toaddress the apparent dearth of information in communities and healthfacilities”.

“The new strategy repositions family planning as a means to achieve abetter quality of life,” the HealthPRPO briefer said.

“Just think of the future of your children and you can do it,” LeonilaPelipas, mother of three, said.

Pelipas admitted she had used intrauterine device (IUD) as a method ofcontraception but found the natural or calendar method better.

“Wejust need a little discipline to get used to it, though sometimes it’shard especially if your husband is a fisherman,” she said.

Two other parents, Reynaldo Peras, father of eight, and Flordeliz Makitid, mother of four kids, participated in the talk show during the program.

For his part, Governor Migs Dominguez called on the residents to invest on their future and their children’s future through family planning and responsible parenthood as a means of spending their low income wisely by having less number of children.

“We will teach you the better way of life and we are always here to give you assistance and to guide you,” Dominguez said.

Municipal Health Officer Dr. Jaileen Milar stressed on the four pillars of family planning - the right to life, informed choice, birth spacing and responsible parenthood - for the couples.

“If they only know what to do, they would always choose not to have more children in the family. They know how hard it is to raise them,”Milar said. “So our first task is actually to inform and educatethem.”

Cornelia Baldelovar, provincial health education and promotion officer, said the Provincial Health Office selected only five couples from Maasim’s 16 barangays to attend the activity who will share andendorse family planning methods back to their own communities.

Conal Holdings Corporation and Mahintana Foundation, HealthPRO’s local replicating agency, have been conducting health classes, trainings and counseling among health care workers in the province. (Russtum G.Pelima/SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

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