Faith-Based Advocacy for
Family Planning
June 2013
Healthy Families, Healthy Planet
• Project of GBCS since 2010
• Funded by United Nations Foundation
• Seeks more U.S. fund...
What is advocacy?
Advocacy
 A project, program or programmatic approach
that seeks to address the structural and
systemic causes of poverty...
Why are we called to be
advocates?
“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he
has anointed me to proclaim good news to
t...
What do you need to do advocacy?
• Passion
– Using your personal stories
• Knowledge
– Resources
– Messaging
• Opportunity...
Passion: Sharing our Stories
Beatrice Gbanga
The Case for Family Planning
Every day…
• 800 women die from pregnancy/childbirth
• 16,000 suffer birth-related injury/ in...
The Family Planning Gap
Worldwide, more than 222 million women
would like to delay or prevent pregnancy but
have no access...
The Ripple Effect
• A healthy woman earns and owns more.
• A smaller family has more resources to send
children to school ...
Broad, Faith-Based Support for
FP & Maternal Health
• Presbyterian Church USA
– Call[s] upon all Presbyterians …to show, i...
United Methodist Social Principles
• ¶162 III. The Social Community
– “People have the duty to consider the impact on the ...
CCIH Resources
http://tinyurl.com/CCIHResources
• Getting
Contraceptives to
Health Facilities: 10
Questions for
Community-...
FP Resources
• World Health
Organization.
Family Planning:
A Global
Handbook for
Providers
• Georgetown
University IRH: Lo...
FP Resources
• K4 Health
Family
Planning
Advocacy
Toolkit
• Launches
July 2013
www.k4health.org/toolkits/family-planning-
...
Maternal Health Messaging
• Maternal mortality is one of the leading causes of death for
women of childbearing age worldwi...
Family Planning Messaging
•222 million women in developing countries want to avoid
pregnancy but lack access to or informa...
Faith-Based Messages
• As Christians, we claim the promise of Jesus in the Gospel of John
that he came to bring his follow...
What family planning messages
resonate in your faith community?
Building an Advocacy Plan
• Goal
• Targets
• Building community support
• Tactics
– Events
– Meetings
– Media
21
Who do you want to reach?
•Elected officials (and their staff)
•Denominational Leaders (Bishops, Conference Leaders,
et...
22
Who can help you spread your message?
•Partnerships are a great way to reach new audiences and
expand your message
•Org...
23
How can you most effectively spread your message?
•Hosting events and/or recruiting partners for hosting
events
•Organi...
What can we achieve as advocates?
Institutional Change
Maternal Health: The Church’s Role
(2012 General Conference)
• Calls upon all local congregations to:...
If current unmet need was met…
• Unintended pregnancies would drop by
two-thirds, from 80 million to 26 million
• 26 milli...
27
Advocacy Planning Exercise
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CCCIH 2013 Pre-Conf Family Planning Advocacy Kraft

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Katie Kraft of the United Methodist Church Global Board of Church and Society explains advocacy and discusses UMC's Healthy Families Healthy Planet initiative. She explores why Christians are called to advocate for family planning services.

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CCCIH 2013 Pre-Conf Family Planning Advocacy Kraft

  1. 1. Faith-Based Advocacy for Family Planning June 2013
  2. 2. Healthy Families, Healthy Planet • Project of GBCS since 2010 • Funded by United Nations Foundation • Seeks more U.S. funding, better policies for global family planning/maternal health (FP/MH) • Works to educate, train, and mobilize people of faith on FP/MH
  3. 3. What is advocacy?
  4. 4. Advocacy  A project, program or programmatic approach that seeks to address the structural and systemic causes of poverty by changing policies, systems, budgetary allocations, practices and attitudes that perpetuate inequality and that deny justice and human rights. • Seeking justice • Increasing the sustainability of our work • Building movements for change
  5. 5. Why are we called to be advocates? “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free” Luke 4:18
  6. 6. What do you need to do advocacy? • Passion – Using your personal stories • Knowledge – Resources – Messaging • Opportunity • Plan
  7. 7. Passion: Sharing our Stories Beatrice Gbanga
  8. 8. The Case for Family Planning Every day… • 800 women die from pregnancy/childbirth • 16,000 suffer birth-related injury/ infection • 8,3000 neonatal infants die • 2,700 children are left motherless And 99% of these deaths and injuries occur in the developing world. Source: World Health Organization
  9. 9. The Family Planning Gap Worldwide, more than 222 million women would like to delay or prevent pregnancy but have no access to or education about modern, safe contraceptive methods.
  10. 10. The Ripple Effect • A healthy woman earns and owns more. • A smaller family has more resources to send children to school and feed them. • A well-educated girl delays marriage and has fewer children. • A community with healthy women has a larger, more vibrant workforce. • Slowed population growth = less strain on land, resources
  11. 11. Broad, Faith-Based Support for FP & Maternal Health • Presbyterian Church USA – Call[s] upon all Presbyterians …to show, in Christlike manner, respect and appreciation for persons who conscientiously choose not to conceive children; and to avoid all references to these persons that might be taken as indicating that their choice in this regard is selfish, irresponsible, or contrary to Christian faithfulness. • Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints – “The decision of how many children to have and when to have them is a private matter for the husband and wife.” • Evangelical Lutheran Church of America – “We recognize the need for contraceptives to be available, for voluntary sterilization to be considered, and for research and development of new forms of contraception.”
  12. 12. United Methodist Social Principles • ¶162 III. The Social Community – “People have the duty to consider the impact on the total world community of their decisions regarding childbearing and should have access to information and appropriate means to limit their fertility” (Paragraph K) – “We affirm the right of men and women to have access to comprehensive reproductive health/family planning information and services that will serve as a means to prevent unplanned pregnancies, reduce abortions, and prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS” (Paragraph V)
  13. 13. CCIH Resources http://tinyurl.com/CCIHResources • Getting Contraceptives to Health Facilities: 10 Questions for Community-Based Groups to Consider • Do you think you know where Christians stand on family planning? Think again! • Family Planning Reduces Abortion - and Faith Groups Can Help • Men and Family Planning • Family Planning: Another Way Faith Groups Can Prevent HIV Infections
  14. 14. FP Resources • World Health Organization. Family Planning: A Global Handbook for Providers • Georgetown University IRH: Love, Children and Family Planning • IMA World Health: Christian Sermon Guide to Save the Lives of Mothers and Newborns: A Toolkit for Religious Leaders
  15. 15. FP Resources • K4 Health Family Planning Advocacy Toolkit • Launches July 2013 www.k4health.org/toolkits/family-planning- advocacy
  16. 16. Maternal Health Messaging • Maternal mortality is one of the leading causes of death for women of childbearing age worldwide. Every two minutes, a woman dies as a result of complications during pregnancy or childbirth; for every woman who dies, another twenty suffer disability. • Every year, millions of children are left motherless and vulnerable. Infants whose mothers die within the first six weeks of their lives are up to 10 times more likely to die prematurely than those whose mothers survive. • When a mother is present to raise her children, research shows that family income is higher, kids stay in school longer, and families and communities are stronger.
  17. 17. Family Planning Messaging •222 million women in developing countries want to avoid pregnancy but lack access to or information about modern contraceptives. •Family planning services, such as contraceptives, save hundreds of thousands of women’s lives and prevent millions of new cases of HIV each year. •Family planning services in developing countries help women to safely space their pregnancies. Women and men who have access to contraception are more empowered to take care of their family’s health and education, which builds strong communities.
  18. 18. Faith-Based Messages • As Christians, we claim the promise of Jesus in the Gospel of John that he came to bring his followers abundant life. • God calls us to respond to the suffering in the world, to love our neighbors throughout the world. As followers of Christ, we are members of the same body. The loss of one member is a loss for all. • Women are crying out for not only their own survival but also the survival of their families and communities. They deserve access to services and care that empower their personal decision-making. As a global church, we are called to eradicate systems of oppression and marginalization that inhibit women's well-being.
  19. 19. What family planning messages resonate in your faith community?
  20. 20. Building an Advocacy Plan • Goal • Targets • Building community support • Tactics – Events – Meetings – Media
  21. 21. 21 Who do you want to reach? •Elected officials (and their staff) •Denominational Leaders (Bishops, Conference Leaders, etc.) •Community leaders •Congregational leaders •Congregation members Targets
  22. 22. 22 Who can help you spread your message? •Partnerships are a great way to reach new audiences and expand your message •Organizations with overlapping missions or common interests should be your first priority •Consider if there is a gap in your organization you need to fill (Well-known leader? Specific constituency?) •Partnerships might useful for one event, or it might be helpful for a longer-term process Building Partnerships
  23. 23. 23 How can you most effectively spread your message? •Hosting events and/or recruiting partners for hosting events •Organizing meetings or speaking to groups of existing meetings •Conducting outreach to local media through spokespeople or with Op Eds and Letters to the Editor •Other ideas for tactics? Planning Your Tactics
  24. 24. What can we achieve as advocates?
  25. 25. Institutional Change Maternal Health: The Church’s Role (2012 General Conference) • Calls upon all local congregations to: – Support United Methodist projects around the world working on maternal health and family planning. – Advocate with policy makers at all levels to improve maternal health through increased access to maternal health and family planning services. – Support local health initiatives that expand access to information and services for women
  26. 26. If current unmet need was met… • Unintended pregnancies would drop by two-thirds, from 80 million to 26 million • 26 million fewer abortions, • 7 million fewer miscarriages Source: Guttmacher
  27. 27. 27 Advocacy Planning Exercise

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