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In pictures: Humanitarian photographers share their experiences of storytelling in the field

IPPF’s localized approach to humanitarian emergencies is led by our Member Associations' response teams and whenever possible, we deploy local photographers.

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Hervé Tchuigwa Djiya
story

| 08 July 2019

"I help to raise awareness of why we have to protect ourselves"

“The first time I met Chariette [a peer educator for the Cameroon National Planning Association for Family Welfare] was at Sunday football, around four years ago. She was invited by the organizer to come and talk to us when the match was over. We were all men but she wasn’t intimidated and she handled the stupid jokes well.  We stayed in touch and then one day I realized I had an STI. It’s a little taboo and I didn’t want to talk about it. I bought some drugs at the local market but they didn’t have any effect. I called Chariette and we discussed what had happened. She told me to come to the CAMNAFAW clinic and I did, where I spoke about my problem and they gave me proper drugs to get rid of it. That day, I decided to become a peer educator myself. There are a lot of guys who are suffering but too scared to speak out. Above all, men are scared of talking about STIs.  I now work in schools and youth groups, especially sports teams. They will insist they don’t have anything wrong but every Sunday since then I have gone round the teams and chatted with them.  I speak about pregnancy as well. It’s the guys who push women to have sex without a condom and also to have an abortion afterwards. I help to raise awareness of why we have to protect ourselves. It’s hard to recruit people to become peer educators because we are volunteers. It’s not easy to persuade people to change their ways. The view from a lot of churches is very strict and centers on abstinence. The young men want to be macho.” Hervé Tchuigwa Djiya is a peer educator for the Cameroon National Planning Association for Family Welfare (CAMNAFAW)

Hervé Tchuigwa Djiya
story

| 24 May 2022

"I help to raise awareness of why we have to protect ourselves"

“The first time I met Chariette [a peer educator for the Cameroon National Planning Association for Family Welfare] was at Sunday football, around four years ago. She was invited by the organizer to come and talk to us when the match was over. We were all men but she wasn’t intimidated and she handled the stupid jokes well.  We stayed in touch and then one day I realized I had an STI. It’s a little taboo and I didn’t want to talk about it. I bought some drugs at the local market but they didn’t have any effect. I called Chariette and we discussed what had happened. She told me to come to the CAMNAFAW clinic and I did, where I spoke about my problem and they gave me proper drugs to get rid of it. That day, I decided to become a peer educator myself. There are a lot of guys who are suffering but too scared to speak out. Above all, men are scared of talking about STIs.  I now work in schools and youth groups, especially sports teams. They will insist they don’t have anything wrong but every Sunday since then I have gone round the teams and chatted with them.  I speak about pregnancy as well. It’s the guys who push women to have sex without a condom and also to have an abortion afterwards. I help to raise awareness of why we have to protect ourselves. It’s hard to recruit people to become peer educators because we are volunteers. It’s not easy to persuade people to change their ways. The view from a lot of churches is very strict and centers on abstinence. The young men want to be macho.” Hervé Tchuigwa Djiya is a peer educator for the Cameroon National Planning Association for Family Welfare (CAMNAFAW)

Peer educator and English language student Gertrude Zouakeu Noutcha, 29, at Mimboman clinic in Yaounde, Cameroon
story

| 08 July 2019

"I have brothers and I have helped them to change too. I’ve helped them to adopt a healthier sex life"

“Chariette was my neighbor. We lived next door to each other. She often organized group information sessions in the neighbourhood to talk about sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and early pregnancy, and unintended pregnancies as well.  When I started attending her sessions I was in a bit of unstable relationship. My life was chaotic. My boyfriend didn’t like using protection and we told each other that as we loved each other we weren’t taking any risks. Once I caught something and I was itching a lot. My boyfriend told me that I must have caught it in a public toilet. I trusted him and I didn’t realize I could catch something. When I started listening to Chariette it opened my eyes and I realized I was running big risks. As we aren’t married and we are still studying, we shouldn’t have an unintended pregnancy. What would we do? She told me about sexually transmitted infections as well. I tried to talk to my boyfriend about it but he didn’t want to hear about it, especially about using condoms. I asked for a private session with Chariette for him, and she spoke to us both and he finally understood. Today we have a much more stable sex life and we aren’t running those risks anymore. He learned how to use a condom. After attending her sessions, I was able to save a friend with Chariette’s help. This friend tried to perform an abortion herself and she was bleeding everywhere. I remembered that Chariette told me about the Cameroon National Planning Association for Family Welfare clinic, so I called her and asked how she could be admitted. She was able to receive post-abortion care but if I hadn’t known Chariette I don’t know what would have happened. I have brothers and I have helped them to change too. I’ve helped them to adopt a healthier sex life. There is HIV around and it’s scary.” Gertrude Zouakeu Noutcha, 29, is a student and peer educator for the Cameroon National Planning Association for Family Welfare (CAMNAFAW)

Peer educator and English language student Gertrude Zouakeu Noutcha, 29, at Mimboman clinic in Yaounde, Cameroon
story

| 24 May 2022

"I have brothers and I have helped them to change too. I’ve helped them to adopt a healthier sex life"

“Chariette was my neighbor. We lived next door to each other. She often organized group information sessions in the neighbourhood to talk about sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and early pregnancy, and unintended pregnancies as well.  When I started attending her sessions I was in a bit of unstable relationship. My life was chaotic. My boyfriend didn’t like using protection and we told each other that as we loved each other we weren’t taking any risks. Once I caught something and I was itching a lot. My boyfriend told me that I must have caught it in a public toilet. I trusted him and I didn’t realize I could catch something. When I started listening to Chariette it opened my eyes and I realized I was running big risks. As we aren’t married and we are still studying, we shouldn’t have an unintended pregnancy. What would we do? She told me about sexually transmitted infections as well. I tried to talk to my boyfriend about it but he didn’t want to hear about it, especially about using condoms. I asked for a private session with Chariette for him, and she spoke to us both and he finally understood. Today we have a much more stable sex life and we aren’t running those risks anymore. He learned how to use a condom. After attending her sessions, I was able to save a friend with Chariette’s help. This friend tried to perform an abortion herself and she was bleeding everywhere. I remembered that Chariette told me about the Cameroon National Planning Association for Family Welfare clinic, so I called her and asked how she could be admitted. She was able to receive post-abortion care but if I hadn’t known Chariette I don’t know what would have happened. I have brothers and I have helped them to change too. I’ve helped them to adopt a healthier sex life. There is HIV around and it’s scary.” Gertrude Zouakeu Noutcha, 29, is a student and peer educator for the Cameroon National Planning Association for Family Welfare (CAMNAFAW)

Nursing Supervisor Ms. Lovely Yasmin
story

| 08 February 2018

"...now I can provide MR (menstrual regulation) services efficiently."

Menstrual regulation, the method of establishing non-pregnancy for a woman at risk of unintended pregnancy, has been a part of Bangladesh’s family planning program since 1979. It is allowed up to 10 –12 weeks after a woman’s last menstrual period. Nursing Supervisor Ms. Lovely Yasmin is one of several staff members providing family planning, menstrual regulation, and post-procedure care services at Upzila Health Complex in Belkuchi, Bangladesh. “Before this training we used to sometimes advise people on such services and provided menstrual regulation (MR) services but after the training I’ve have become and confident and efficient in providing MR services,” she says. “Earlier there could possibly have been mistake but now I can provide MR services efficiently and perfectly. I can now provide MR services in more organized manner.” But while Yasmin, who has worked in family planning for 16 years, says that the recent training has increased her confidence in properly doing MR procedures, the health complex still lacks basic supplies. “There were difficulties due to limited equipment,” she says. “We sometimes have to use personal equipment.” But, she says, the presence of Kit 8 has made life easier. “Prior to this kit, many clients did not complete the full course of medical as advices due to financial issues… during floods there are many hardships including financial difficulty,” she says. “However with this kit, most of the medicines are provided and clients are easily managing on their own.”

Nursing Supervisor Ms. Lovely Yasmin
story

| 24 May 2022

"...now I can provide MR (menstrual regulation) services efficiently."

Menstrual regulation, the method of establishing non-pregnancy for a woman at risk of unintended pregnancy, has been a part of Bangladesh’s family planning program since 1979. It is allowed up to 10 –12 weeks after a woman’s last menstrual period. Nursing Supervisor Ms. Lovely Yasmin is one of several staff members providing family planning, menstrual regulation, and post-procedure care services at Upzila Health Complex in Belkuchi, Bangladesh. “Before this training we used to sometimes advise people on such services and provided menstrual regulation (MR) services but after the training I’ve have become and confident and efficient in providing MR services,” she says. “Earlier there could possibly have been mistake but now I can provide MR services efficiently and perfectly. I can now provide MR services in more organized manner.” But while Yasmin, who has worked in family planning for 16 years, says that the recent training has increased her confidence in properly doing MR procedures, the health complex still lacks basic supplies. “There were difficulties due to limited equipment,” she says. “We sometimes have to use personal equipment.” But, she says, the presence of Kit 8 has made life easier. “Prior to this kit, many clients did not complete the full course of medical as advices due to financial issues… during floods there are many hardships including financial difficulty,” she says. “However with this kit, most of the medicines are provided and clients are easily managing on their own.”

Client at the hospital
story

| 08 February 2018

“After the menstrual regulations services I was prescribed a few medicines which I could not buy due to poor financial condition”

Menstrual regulation, the method of establishing non-pregnancy for a woman at risk of unintended pregnancy, has been a part of Bangladesh’s family planning program since 1979. It is allowed up to 10 –12 weeks after a woman’s last menstrual period. When Shana Khatun, a mother of three, became pregnant again she says she began to feel very weak and had issues with massive bleeding.Citing her age and the possibility of further medical complications, Khatun decided to undergo a menstrual regulation procedure. “But if the hospital and services weren’t there then I would have had to have continued with my pregnancy, even when (I do) not want another child” she says. Khatun says that the procedure went well, but that without the presence of medicine found in Kit 8 she would have lacked post-operation medicine. “After the menstrual regulations services I was prescribed a few medicines which I could not buy due to poor financial condition,” she says. “But the hospital gave me a number of medicines that I could take.” And while Khatun had talked with women about various family planning methods, she didn’t feel she could talk with anyone aside from her husband about getting the procedure. “I feared they would treat me poorly (the hospital),” she says. But Kahtun says she found the hospital trustworthy and helpful, even when she was suffering complications such as mass bleeding. “I will be very cautious that I should not get pregnant again however in event if I get pregnant again then I will come to this hospital only,” she says.

Client at the hospital
story

| 24 May 2022

“After the menstrual regulations services I was prescribed a few medicines which I could not buy due to poor financial condition”

Menstrual regulation, the method of establishing non-pregnancy for a woman at risk of unintended pregnancy, has been a part of Bangladesh’s family planning program since 1979. It is allowed up to 10 –12 weeks after a woman’s last menstrual period. When Shana Khatun, a mother of three, became pregnant again she says she began to feel very weak and had issues with massive bleeding.Citing her age and the possibility of further medical complications, Khatun decided to undergo a menstrual regulation procedure. “But if the hospital and services weren’t there then I would have had to have continued with my pregnancy, even when (I do) not want another child” she says. Khatun says that the procedure went well, but that without the presence of medicine found in Kit 8 she would have lacked post-operation medicine. “After the menstrual regulations services I was prescribed a few medicines which I could not buy due to poor financial condition,” she says. “But the hospital gave me a number of medicines that I could take.” And while Khatun had talked with women about various family planning methods, she didn’t feel she could talk with anyone aside from her husband about getting the procedure. “I feared they would treat me poorly (the hospital),” she says. But Kahtun says she found the hospital trustworthy and helpful, even when she was suffering complications such as mass bleeding. “I will be very cautious that I should not get pregnant again however in event if I get pregnant again then I will come to this hospital only,” she says.

Auliya Khatun, 40, of Village Chandangatti, Union Daulatpur, at her home
story

| 08 February 2018

“My spouse was supportive and he gave me the freedom to come to this decision myself”

Menstrual regulation, the method of establishing non-pregnancy for a woman at risk of unintended pregnancy, has been a part of Bangladesh’s family planning program since 1979. It is allowed up to 10 –12 weeks after a woman’s last menstrual period. Auliya Khatun, a mother of three children, was 40 years old when she found out that she had unintentionally become pregnant again. Khatun says she had heard about family planning services and menstrual regulation services available at the Upzila Health Complex from other women in her small village. She discussed the option of undergoing menstrual regulation with her husband. “My spouse was supportive and he gave me the freedom to come to this decision myself,” Khatun says. “If this service was not available then I would have carried on with the pregnancy. It would have been embarrassing, though,” she explains. “It is embarrassing to have another child at this age.” Khatun, who sometimes assists her husband with work in a local handloom, also cited the financial burden another child would have on her family. “We are facing financial difficulty so it is not possible to have another child.” Khatun says she only experienced mild gastric discomfort after the procedure but felt assured about her recovery due to being able to check-in with doctors at the local health centre. The access to the services and doctors, she says, was a major factor in a smooth and easy recovery. “Since this service was in a government facility I could prevail [through] this and survive,” she says. “It is an important service.”  

Auliya Khatun, 40, of Village Chandangatti, Union Daulatpur, at her home
story

| 24 May 2022

“My spouse was supportive and he gave me the freedom to come to this decision myself”

Menstrual regulation, the method of establishing non-pregnancy for a woman at risk of unintended pregnancy, has been a part of Bangladesh’s family planning program since 1979. It is allowed up to 10 –12 weeks after a woman’s last menstrual period. Auliya Khatun, a mother of three children, was 40 years old when she found out that she had unintentionally become pregnant again. Khatun says she had heard about family planning services and menstrual regulation services available at the Upzila Health Complex from other women in her small village. She discussed the option of undergoing menstrual regulation with her husband. “My spouse was supportive and he gave me the freedom to come to this decision myself,” Khatun says. “If this service was not available then I would have carried on with the pregnancy. It would have been embarrassing, though,” she explains. “It is embarrassing to have another child at this age.” Khatun, who sometimes assists her husband with work in a local handloom, also cited the financial burden another child would have on her family. “We are facing financial difficulty so it is not possible to have another child.” Khatun says she only experienced mild gastric discomfort after the procedure but felt assured about her recovery due to being able to check-in with doctors at the local health centre. The access to the services and doctors, she says, was a major factor in a smooth and easy recovery. “Since this service was in a government facility I could prevail [through] this and survive,” she says. “It is an important service.”  

Hervé Tchuigwa Djiya
story

| 08 July 2019

"I help to raise awareness of why we have to protect ourselves"

“The first time I met Chariette [a peer educator for the Cameroon National Planning Association for Family Welfare] was at Sunday football, around four years ago. She was invited by the organizer to come and talk to us when the match was over. We were all men but she wasn’t intimidated and she handled the stupid jokes well.  We stayed in touch and then one day I realized I had an STI. It’s a little taboo and I didn’t want to talk about it. I bought some drugs at the local market but they didn’t have any effect. I called Chariette and we discussed what had happened. She told me to come to the CAMNAFAW clinic and I did, where I spoke about my problem and they gave me proper drugs to get rid of it. That day, I decided to become a peer educator myself. There are a lot of guys who are suffering but too scared to speak out. Above all, men are scared of talking about STIs.  I now work in schools and youth groups, especially sports teams. They will insist they don’t have anything wrong but every Sunday since then I have gone round the teams and chatted with them.  I speak about pregnancy as well. It’s the guys who push women to have sex without a condom and also to have an abortion afterwards. I help to raise awareness of why we have to protect ourselves. It’s hard to recruit people to become peer educators because we are volunteers. It’s not easy to persuade people to change their ways. The view from a lot of churches is very strict and centers on abstinence. The young men want to be macho.” Hervé Tchuigwa Djiya is a peer educator for the Cameroon National Planning Association for Family Welfare (CAMNAFAW)

Hervé Tchuigwa Djiya
story

| 24 May 2022

"I help to raise awareness of why we have to protect ourselves"

“The first time I met Chariette [a peer educator for the Cameroon National Planning Association for Family Welfare] was at Sunday football, around four years ago. She was invited by the organizer to come and talk to us when the match was over. We were all men but she wasn’t intimidated and she handled the stupid jokes well.  We stayed in touch and then one day I realized I had an STI. It’s a little taboo and I didn’t want to talk about it. I bought some drugs at the local market but they didn’t have any effect. I called Chariette and we discussed what had happened. She told me to come to the CAMNAFAW clinic and I did, where I spoke about my problem and they gave me proper drugs to get rid of it. That day, I decided to become a peer educator myself. There are a lot of guys who are suffering but too scared to speak out. Above all, men are scared of talking about STIs.  I now work in schools and youth groups, especially sports teams. They will insist they don’t have anything wrong but every Sunday since then I have gone round the teams and chatted with them.  I speak about pregnancy as well. It’s the guys who push women to have sex without a condom and also to have an abortion afterwards. I help to raise awareness of why we have to protect ourselves. It’s hard to recruit people to become peer educators because we are volunteers. It’s not easy to persuade people to change their ways. The view from a lot of churches is very strict and centers on abstinence. The young men want to be macho.” Hervé Tchuigwa Djiya is a peer educator for the Cameroon National Planning Association for Family Welfare (CAMNAFAW)

Peer educator and English language student Gertrude Zouakeu Noutcha, 29, at Mimboman clinic in Yaounde, Cameroon
story

| 08 July 2019

"I have brothers and I have helped them to change too. I’ve helped them to adopt a healthier sex life"

“Chariette was my neighbor. We lived next door to each other. She often organized group information sessions in the neighbourhood to talk about sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and early pregnancy, and unintended pregnancies as well.  When I started attending her sessions I was in a bit of unstable relationship. My life was chaotic. My boyfriend didn’t like using protection and we told each other that as we loved each other we weren’t taking any risks. Once I caught something and I was itching a lot. My boyfriend told me that I must have caught it in a public toilet. I trusted him and I didn’t realize I could catch something. When I started listening to Chariette it opened my eyes and I realized I was running big risks. As we aren’t married and we are still studying, we shouldn’t have an unintended pregnancy. What would we do? She told me about sexually transmitted infections as well. I tried to talk to my boyfriend about it but he didn’t want to hear about it, especially about using condoms. I asked for a private session with Chariette for him, and she spoke to us both and he finally understood. Today we have a much more stable sex life and we aren’t running those risks anymore. He learned how to use a condom. After attending her sessions, I was able to save a friend with Chariette’s help. This friend tried to perform an abortion herself and she was bleeding everywhere. I remembered that Chariette told me about the Cameroon National Planning Association for Family Welfare clinic, so I called her and asked how she could be admitted. She was able to receive post-abortion care but if I hadn’t known Chariette I don’t know what would have happened. I have brothers and I have helped them to change too. I’ve helped them to adopt a healthier sex life. There is HIV around and it’s scary.” Gertrude Zouakeu Noutcha, 29, is a student and peer educator for the Cameroon National Planning Association for Family Welfare (CAMNAFAW)

Peer educator and English language student Gertrude Zouakeu Noutcha, 29, at Mimboman clinic in Yaounde, Cameroon
story

| 24 May 2022

"I have brothers and I have helped them to change too. I’ve helped them to adopt a healthier sex life"

“Chariette was my neighbor. We lived next door to each other. She often organized group information sessions in the neighbourhood to talk about sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and early pregnancy, and unintended pregnancies as well.  When I started attending her sessions I was in a bit of unstable relationship. My life was chaotic. My boyfriend didn’t like using protection and we told each other that as we loved each other we weren’t taking any risks. Once I caught something and I was itching a lot. My boyfriend told me that I must have caught it in a public toilet. I trusted him and I didn’t realize I could catch something. When I started listening to Chariette it opened my eyes and I realized I was running big risks. As we aren’t married and we are still studying, we shouldn’t have an unintended pregnancy. What would we do? She told me about sexually transmitted infections as well. I tried to talk to my boyfriend about it but he didn’t want to hear about it, especially about using condoms. I asked for a private session with Chariette for him, and she spoke to us both and he finally understood. Today we have a much more stable sex life and we aren’t running those risks anymore. He learned how to use a condom. After attending her sessions, I was able to save a friend with Chariette’s help. This friend tried to perform an abortion herself and she was bleeding everywhere. I remembered that Chariette told me about the Cameroon National Planning Association for Family Welfare clinic, so I called her and asked how she could be admitted. She was able to receive post-abortion care but if I hadn’t known Chariette I don’t know what would have happened. I have brothers and I have helped them to change too. I’ve helped them to adopt a healthier sex life. There is HIV around and it’s scary.” Gertrude Zouakeu Noutcha, 29, is a student and peer educator for the Cameroon National Planning Association for Family Welfare (CAMNAFAW)

Nursing Supervisor Ms. Lovely Yasmin
story

| 08 February 2018

"...now I can provide MR (menstrual regulation) services efficiently."

Menstrual regulation, the method of establishing non-pregnancy for a woman at risk of unintended pregnancy, has been a part of Bangladesh’s family planning program since 1979. It is allowed up to 10 –12 weeks after a woman’s last menstrual period. Nursing Supervisor Ms. Lovely Yasmin is one of several staff members providing family planning, menstrual regulation, and post-procedure care services at Upzila Health Complex in Belkuchi, Bangladesh. “Before this training we used to sometimes advise people on such services and provided menstrual regulation (MR) services but after the training I’ve have become and confident and efficient in providing MR services,” she says. “Earlier there could possibly have been mistake but now I can provide MR services efficiently and perfectly. I can now provide MR services in more organized manner.” But while Yasmin, who has worked in family planning for 16 years, says that the recent training has increased her confidence in properly doing MR procedures, the health complex still lacks basic supplies. “There were difficulties due to limited equipment,” she says. “We sometimes have to use personal equipment.” But, she says, the presence of Kit 8 has made life easier. “Prior to this kit, many clients did not complete the full course of medical as advices due to financial issues… during floods there are many hardships including financial difficulty,” she says. “However with this kit, most of the medicines are provided and clients are easily managing on their own.”

Nursing Supervisor Ms. Lovely Yasmin
story

| 24 May 2022

"...now I can provide MR (menstrual regulation) services efficiently."

Menstrual regulation, the method of establishing non-pregnancy for a woman at risk of unintended pregnancy, has been a part of Bangladesh’s family planning program since 1979. It is allowed up to 10 –12 weeks after a woman’s last menstrual period. Nursing Supervisor Ms. Lovely Yasmin is one of several staff members providing family planning, menstrual regulation, and post-procedure care services at Upzila Health Complex in Belkuchi, Bangladesh. “Before this training we used to sometimes advise people on such services and provided menstrual regulation (MR) services but after the training I’ve have become and confident and efficient in providing MR services,” she says. “Earlier there could possibly have been mistake but now I can provide MR services efficiently and perfectly. I can now provide MR services in more organized manner.” But while Yasmin, who has worked in family planning for 16 years, says that the recent training has increased her confidence in properly doing MR procedures, the health complex still lacks basic supplies. “There were difficulties due to limited equipment,” she says. “We sometimes have to use personal equipment.” But, she says, the presence of Kit 8 has made life easier. “Prior to this kit, many clients did not complete the full course of medical as advices due to financial issues… during floods there are many hardships including financial difficulty,” she says. “However with this kit, most of the medicines are provided and clients are easily managing on their own.”

Client at the hospital
story

| 08 February 2018

“After the menstrual regulations services I was prescribed a few medicines which I could not buy due to poor financial condition”

Menstrual regulation, the method of establishing non-pregnancy for a woman at risk of unintended pregnancy, has been a part of Bangladesh’s family planning program since 1979. It is allowed up to 10 –12 weeks after a woman’s last menstrual period. When Shana Khatun, a mother of three, became pregnant again she says she began to feel very weak and had issues with massive bleeding.Citing her age and the possibility of further medical complications, Khatun decided to undergo a menstrual regulation procedure. “But if the hospital and services weren’t there then I would have had to have continued with my pregnancy, even when (I do) not want another child” she says. Khatun says that the procedure went well, but that without the presence of medicine found in Kit 8 she would have lacked post-operation medicine. “After the menstrual regulations services I was prescribed a few medicines which I could not buy due to poor financial condition,” she says. “But the hospital gave me a number of medicines that I could take.” And while Khatun had talked with women about various family planning methods, she didn’t feel she could talk with anyone aside from her husband about getting the procedure. “I feared they would treat me poorly (the hospital),” she says. But Kahtun says she found the hospital trustworthy and helpful, even when she was suffering complications such as mass bleeding. “I will be very cautious that I should not get pregnant again however in event if I get pregnant again then I will come to this hospital only,” she says.

Client at the hospital
story

| 24 May 2022

“After the menstrual regulations services I was prescribed a few medicines which I could not buy due to poor financial condition”

Menstrual regulation, the method of establishing non-pregnancy for a woman at risk of unintended pregnancy, has been a part of Bangladesh’s family planning program since 1979. It is allowed up to 10 –12 weeks after a woman’s last menstrual period. When Shana Khatun, a mother of three, became pregnant again she says she began to feel very weak and had issues with massive bleeding.Citing her age and the possibility of further medical complications, Khatun decided to undergo a menstrual regulation procedure. “But if the hospital and services weren’t there then I would have had to have continued with my pregnancy, even when (I do) not want another child” she says. Khatun says that the procedure went well, but that without the presence of medicine found in Kit 8 she would have lacked post-operation medicine. “After the menstrual regulations services I was prescribed a few medicines which I could not buy due to poor financial condition,” she says. “But the hospital gave me a number of medicines that I could take.” And while Khatun had talked with women about various family planning methods, she didn’t feel she could talk with anyone aside from her husband about getting the procedure. “I feared they would treat me poorly (the hospital),” she says. But Kahtun says she found the hospital trustworthy and helpful, even when she was suffering complications such as mass bleeding. “I will be very cautious that I should not get pregnant again however in event if I get pregnant again then I will come to this hospital only,” she says.

Auliya Khatun, 40, of Village Chandangatti, Union Daulatpur, at her home
story

| 08 February 2018

“My spouse was supportive and he gave me the freedom to come to this decision myself”

Menstrual regulation, the method of establishing non-pregnancy for a woman at risk of unintended pregnancy, has been a part of Bangladesh’s family planning program since 1979. It is allowed up to 10 –12 weeks after a woman’s last menstrual period. Auliya Khatun, a mother of three children, was 40 years old when she found out that she had unintentionally become pregnant again. Khatun says she had heard about family planning services and menstrual regulation services available at the Upzila Health Complex from other women in her small village. She discussed the option of undergoing menstrual regulation with her husband. “My spouse was supportive and he gave me the freedom to come to this decision myself,” Khatun says. “If this service was not available then I would have carried on with the pregnancy. It would have been embarrassing, though,” she explains. “It is embarrassing to have another child at this age.” Khatun, who sometimes assists her husband with work in a local handloom, also cited the financial burden another child would have on her family. “We are facing financial difficulty so it is not possible to have another child.” Khatun says she only experienced mild gastric discomfort after the procedure but felt assured about her recovery due to being able to check-in with doctors at the local health centre. The access to the services and doctors, she says, was a major factor in a smooth and easy recovery. “Since this service was in a government facility I could prevail [through] this and survive,” she says. “It is an important service.”  

Auliya Khatun, 40, of Village Chandangatti, Union Daulatpur, at her home
story

| 24 May 2022

“My spouse was supportive and he gave me the freedom to come to this decision myself”

Menstrual regulation, the method of establishing non-pregnancy for a woman at risk of unintended pregnancy, has been a part of Bangladesh’s family planning program since 1979. It is allowed up to 10 –12 weeks after a woman’s last menstrual period. Auliya Khatun, a mother of three children, was 40 years old when she found out that she had unintentionally become pregnant again. Khatun says she had heard about family planning services and menstrual regulation services available at the Upzila Health Complex from other women in her small village. She discussed the option of undergoing menstrual regulation with her husband. “My spouse was supportive and he gave me the freedom to come to this decision myself,” Khatun says. “If this service was not available then I would have carried on with the pregnancy. It would have been embarrassing, though,” she explains. “It is embarrassing to have another child at this age.” Khatun, who sometimes assists her husband with work in a local handloom, also cited the financial burden another child would have on her family. “We are facing financial difficulty so it is not possible to have another child.” Khatun says she only experienced mild gastric discomfort after the procedure but felt assured about her recovery due to being able to check-in with doctors at the local health centre. The access to the services and doctors, she says, was a major factor in a smooth and easy recovery. “Since this service was in a government facility I could prevail [through] this and survive,” she says. “It is an important service.”