Population Communication – Mission
Population Communication was founded in 1977 to explore the cradle to the grave actions to achieve population stabilization.
In 1850 the population of the planet was 1 billion, in 1930 two billion, 3 billion in 1960, 4 billion in 1974, 5 billion in 1987, 6 billion in 1991 and this year will be 7 billion. Even if all countries achieve replacement size families in South Asia and sub Saharan Africa, the population will reach 11 or 12 billion. Since Independence in sub Saharan Africa, all the populations have increased four times except for those that have increased five times. With half the populations in many sub Saharan African countries below the age of fifteen all couples would have to have one child family for the next 31 years to stabilize at current levels. Even replacement size families will result in population increasing 70-80%. Any population growing greater than replacement will eventually stabilize by an increase in the death rate.
Protecting wildlife and the environment, feeding the hungry, preserving peace and political stability, achieving a smooth transition to a zero fossil fuel future, provides a daunting challenge to everyone on this planet. Beyond the necessity of giving all couples access to the contraceptive means to prevent unwanted pregnancies, we are challenged to guarantee the survivability of children, prevent adolescent pregnancies, increasing age at marriage and birth spacing and reinforcing the value of small families for parents, communities and the nation.
The Challenges to Governments and Donors
- To promote population stabilization policies and programs.
- To determine under what conditions couples in developing countries will attain replacement level fertility.
- To increase awareness of the population problem with national leaders and to identify those leaders who will work on viable solutions.
- To achieve a closer working relationship between population programs and all aspects of development and ecological preservation.
- To improve the efficiency of the donor agencies and governments.
- To develop safe, reliable, effective, easy to use, low cost and reversible contraceptive technologies.
- To apply the available technology for the prevention of unwanted pregnancies:
Law and Policy: To give couples the right to prevent unwanted pregnancies and to eliminate the legal restrictions on providing and promoting contraception.
Administration and Leadership: To establish an autonomous organization capable of coordinating activities with all government ministries and the private sector.
Medical Services: To utilize all medical and paramedical personnel within their capabilities or qualifications after training.
Social Marketing: To use health personnel, field workers, village leaders, midwives, satisfied customers and others to distribute contraceptives and to extend services through all retail stores and marketing structures.
Communication: To develop multimedia campaigns; to select, train and supervise field workers to conduct home visits and group meetings; and to mobilize functionaries to promote contraceptives and small family policies.
Population Education: To integrate text on population and health policies and programs into the school curriculum at every grade level.
Evaluation: To evaluate programs by clinic records, coupons, a sample follow up of acceptors, and surveys of couples in the reproductive age group.
Population Communication Philosophy
- Private Enterprise: Population Communication has been endowed with income from businesses established by the Board of Directors. Management, finance, marketing and advertising techniques are used in all phases of Population Communication programs.
- Highly Leveraged: Population Communication collaborates with other population organizations, donors and governments in designing projects; uses consultants on a contract basis to perform most services; has a low administrative cost; aims at self-sustaining projects.
- Innovative: Working with other population organization, Population Communication goes directly to heads of state to get support for population stabilization; uses marketing firms to promote innovative techniques of birth planning; and, encourages creative artists to communicate the problem and solution to the public.
- Adaptable: All projects proceed after pretesting and surveying the local felt needs. The programs are tailored to the cultural, economic, political and religious setting of the individual countries.
- Experienced: After five decades of experience in the population field, Population Communication staff and consultants have demonstrated integrity, discipline and the ability to take responsible risks in all phases of designing and administering program activities.
- Evaluation: The impact of all projects are evaluated by levels of acceptors, cost efficiency and replication.
Population Communication Projects
- Communicating Population Messages to National Leaders
Population Communication commissions books, reports and surveys which focus on the cultural, historical, political, economic, religious and social aspects of the population problem in specific developing countries. Information about the problem is communicated to national leaders and the public through magazine articles, booklets, radio spots, news releases and direct mail.
- Developing Scripts with Population and Family Planning Themes
Population Communication contracts with television and motion picture writers to prepare scripts which dramatize the problems of rapid urbanization, the plight of homeless children confronting a young couple in a developing country who decide to have a small family. Population Communication informs script writers about the population problem in their country; introduces them to family planning pioneers; encourages them to create heroes of women who take control of their lives and effect social, economic and political change; establishes awards presentations for the writers with the best population scripts; and, organizes seminars and workshops for script writers to review small family ideas that can integrated into the scripts.
- Developing and Pretesting Small Family Policies and Programs
Population Communication designs small family policies and programs, using surveys and action projects, Population Communication is determining what symbolic and substantive actions will successfully achieve small family goals. There are very few developing countries where the process of socioeconomic development will result in replacement level fertility. For this reason, symbolic and substantive rewards and constraints directly aimed at lowering fertility are necessary for both the individual and the community. To achieve population stabilization, a program must improve the well-being of all people and enhance their opportunities and choices in life. The motives for having children can be shifted from those perceived as beneficial for parents to those which are beneficial to children and society. Couples should eventually want and have one or two children.For this reason, social marketing within and beyond family planning is making significant in-roads in delivering services and creating environment for small families to achieve population stabilization.
- Informing and Training Doctors in Developing Countries
Population Communication disseminates information to doctors on the latest birth control techniques. Doctors are given information on how to obtain effective, safe and reliable contraceptive training and equipment.