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Addressing the reproductive health rights of women and families, and specifically meeting their need for family planning is key for the advancement of the sustainable development goals. This was the main issue discussed during a seminar on “Family Planning is a human right” that was organized jointly by BKKBN and UNFPA today. The seminar was commemorated World Population Day 2018. As a key note speaker during the seminar, Ms. Woro Srihastuti Sulistyaningrum – Director of Family, Women, Children, Youth and Sports of Ministry of National Development Planning/Bappenas highlighted that “The impact of family planning is not only for health, but also for other aspects of development. Family planning is an investment to accelerate the achievement of the sustainable development goals, including to improve gender equality, to improve education, especially women and girls, to reduce poverty, and to improve climate change”.  Additionally, family planning can also improve peace and security. “Meeting the need for family planning, especially among the poor, can mitigate peace and security”, Ms. Woro added.


The implementation of the family planning programme is undertaken in coordination with other development programmes, including through “Kampung KB – Village FP”. “Through the Kampung KB, which brings family planning services and other development programs closer, family planning is implemented in an integrated manner to improve the welfare of the community, especially those in remote, disadvantaged areas, on the borders”, said Acting Principal Secretary of BKKBN, Drs. Agus Sukiswo, during the opening ceremony. He also added that “family planning services should be based on the fulfillment of human rights, maintaining family planning services in the public and private sectors, and increasing demand for modern contraceptive methods”.


Indonesia has enjoyed the success of its family planning programme. Initiated in early 1970, the national family planning programme has contributed to the decline in the total fertility rate from 5.6 children initially to 2.4 children in 2017. The contraceptive prevalence has increased from 10 percent to 63 percent during the same period. The impact of the programme has stalled over the past two decades and the programme is facing challenges to address its unmet-need of 10.6 percent, in 2017, and the wide disparities that exist.  To fully address these disparities, collaboration from all sectors is required.


“Indonesia has been trying to revitalize its family planning, strengthen the programme as part of the universal health coverage, improve public-private partnerships and implement its huge family planning 2020 commitment. For us to fully achieve rights- based family planning, we need to unpack reasons behind the stalled family planning programme and have a focused approach for addressing them. Understanding unmet need for contraception – not using contraception despite wanting to avoid or limit pregnancies – is central. ”, said Dr. Annette Sachs Robertson, UNFPA Representative in Indonesia during the seminar.


The seminar also high-lighted how rights-based family planning can be understood and implemented well not only by family planning stakeholders at the central level but also from provincial as well as from district levels.