#ThrivingTogether: Our World Population Day campaignJuly 11, 2019
Today we launch Thriving Together! Our first-of-its-kind global campaign supported by over 150 of the world’s leading environmental and reproductive health organisations. These organisations are all united by their agreement that barrier free access to family planning services is critically important for the environment and biodiversity, as well as women’s and girls’ health and well-being.
Thriving Together highlights the importance of addressing the “unfinished business” of the International Conference of Population and Development Programme of Action. It is timely as this year marks the 25th anniversary since 179 world leaders enshrined reproductive health as a fundamental human right and recognised the important role of reproductive health and gender equality in achieving sustainable development.
The United Nations projects that global population will rise from 7.7 billion today to 9.8 billion by 2050. But this is only one potential scenario. Future population growth is highly sensitive to small changes in the average number of children per mother. If the physical, financial, educational, social and religious barriers to people using family planning services were removed and the average number of children per mother was just 0.5 lower than the UN population projection, which is most commonly used, global population would peak at 8.9 billion in 2050, rather than 9.8 billion.
Increasing human pressures are among the many challenges facing planetary health. In addition, by harming ecosystems, people undermine food and water security and human health, and threaten habitats and species. Ensuring family planning is available to all who seek it is among the positive actions organisations must take to lessen these pressures on our planet.
This is all possible, by enabling the exercise of a well-recognised human right, that people should be able to decide for themselves, whether, when, how often and with whom to bring children into the world. Not only is it possible, it is necessary and non-controversial: family planning contributes to women’s empowerment, improves family and general health, advances education and life opportunities and, by slowing population growth, eases pressures on wildlife and ecosystems.
A mobile "camel clinic" in Milgis, Kenya
To learn more about the campaign visit www.ThrivingTogether.global, and read the Trust’s background paper, “Removing Barriers to Family Planning, Empowering Sustainable Environmental Conservation: A Background Paper and Call for Action” to learn about what we can do.