In the early 1950s, a group of women and men started to campaign vociferously and visibly for women’s rights to control their own fertility.
Family planning as a human right challenged many social conventions. Campaigners faced great hostility to gain acceptance for things that we take for granted today. Some were imprisoned. But they emerged determined to work with different cultures, traditions, laws and religious attitudes to improve the lives of women around the world. And so, at the 3rd International Conference on Planned Parenthood in 1952, 8 national family planning associations founded the International Planned Parenthood Federation. IPPF.
60 years later, the charity is a Federation of 152 Member Associations, working in 172 countries. It runs 65,000 service points worldwide. In 2011, those facilities delivered over 89 million sexual and reproductive health services.
Funding and structure
The IPPF Secretariat comprises Central Office in London and 6 Regional Offices:
Arab World (Tunis)
East and South East Asia and Oceania (Kuala Lumpur)
European Network (Brussels)
South Asia (New Delhi)
Western Hemisphere (New York)
Each Regional Office oversees, promotes and distributes core funds toMember Associations in the Region.
Each Region sends 4 representatives to the biannual Governing Councilwhich determines the Federation’s global policy. Volunteerism is central to IPPF’s ethos and millions of volunteers work with the Federation around the world.
IPPF strives for a world in which all women, men and young people have access to the sexual and reproductive health information and services they need; a world in which sexuality is recognized both as a natural and precious aspect of life and as a fundamental right; a world in which choices are fully respected and where stigma and discrimination have no place.
IPPF aims to improve the quality of life of individuals by providing and campaigning for sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) through advocacy and services, especially for poor and vulnerable people. The Federation defends the right of all people to enjoy sexual lives free from ill health, unwanted pregnancy, violence and discrimination.
IPPF works to ensure that women are not put at unnecessary risk of injury, illness and death as a result of pregnancy and childbirth, and it supports a woman’s right to choose to terminate her pregnancy legally and safely. IPPF strives to eliminate sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and to reduce the spread and impact of HIV and AIDS.
IPPF believes that SRHR should be guaranteed for everyone because they are internationally recognized human rights. IPPF is committed to gender equality, and to eliminating the stigma and discrimination which threatens individual well-being and leads to the widespread violation of health and human rights, particularly among women.
In 2009, 'IPPF+' was established as a Federation-wide network of people living with HIV. It fosters a culture of respect that welcomes, supports and meaningfully involves staff and volunteers who are living with HIV.
The Federation values diversity and emphasizes the participation of young people and people living with HIV and AIDS in its governance and its programmes. IPPF considers the spirit of volunteerism to be central to achieving its mandate and advancing its cause. IPPF is committed to working in partnership with communities, governments, other organizations and donors.