At the London Summit on Family Planning, Bloomberg Philanthropies committed US$50 million to prevent maternal deaths and ensure that women in the world’s poorest countries have access to family planning information, contraceptives and services so they can freely and safely make decisions about when to have children. This commitment builds on Bloomberg Philanthropies’ work to improve maternal and child health in some of the most isolated parts of Tanzania.
In March 2014, Bloomberg Philanthropies announced the full allocation of the commitment made at the London Summit and has since finalized and rolled out a three-pronged investment strategy. In addition to augmenting its support in Tanzania, Bloomberg Philanthropies is preparing to make investments in four more FP2020 focus countries, including Burkina Faso, Nicaragua, Senegal and Uganda.
The program is comprised of:
Integration of comprehensive reproductive health services in Kigoma, Tanzania: Kigoma is the westernmost region of Tanzania. It has among the poorest maternal and reproductive health indicators in the country and, as such, was identified as a high priority region in the Sharpened One Plan, launched by His Excellency President Kikwete in May 2014. Bloomberg Philanthropies has been working to improve maternal health in Kigoma since 2006 by training non-physicians to provide emergency obstetric care and building operating rooms in remote health centers so that more women have access to emergency care closer to home. Bloomberg Philanthropies is amplifying these efforts through a partnership with the Kigoma Regional Government, the Tanzanian Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, and EngenderHealth to upgrade additional health centers and integrate family planning and comprehensive post-abortion care into all project-supported health centers. In the first nine months of the program, EngenderHealth supported efforts that resulted in 17,463 clients accessing the family planning method of their choice.
New advocacy grants to strengthen reproductive health rights in Burkina Faso, Nicaragua, Senegal and Uganda: Bloomberg Philanthropies has partnered with Planned Parenthood Global to identify and support promising local organizations and champions to carry out advocacy that leads to improved access to family planning information, contraceptives and reproductive health services for women, particularly marginalized groups such as youth and unmarried women. This component of the strategy—instigated by the opportunity to catalyze vital reproductive health reform and build local capacity along the way—is just getting off the ground.
The establishment of the Rapid Response Mechanism in partnership with FP2020, hosted by the United Nations Foundation: In July 2014, FP2020 launched the Rapid Response Mechanism (RRM) to provide rapid response funding to fill urgent gaps and unforeseen opportunities to accelerate progress toward FP2020’s goal in any of the 69 FP2020 focus countries.
FOR ALL OUR ADVANCES IN MEDICINE, FAR TOO MANY WOMEN STILL DIE DURING CHILDBIRTH, A TRAGEDY FOR MOTHERS, THEIR CHILDREN, AND THEIR ENTIRE FAMILIES. BY PROVIDING CRITICAL HEALTH SERVICES CLOSER TO MOTHERS’ HOMES—AND BY EMPOWERING WOMEN TO MAKE INFORMED CHOICES ABOUT WHEN THEY WANT TO HAVE CHILDREN—WE CAN HELP SAVE THOUSANDS OF LIVES.
Founder, Bloomberg Philanthropies