KATHMANDU, Feb 24: The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) is planning to provide US$ 30.8 million for family planning programs in Nepal for 2018-2022.
According to the UNFPA, of US$30.8 million, $12.5 million will be from regular sources and $18.3 million through co-financing modalities. This will be the eighth program of the UNFPA in Nepal.
Holding a brief press meet on Friday, Lubna Baqi, Nepal country representative of UNFPA, said, "We look forward to continuing this strong partnership which will put as on the path to ensuring universal access to reproductive health and the achievement of the SDGs. However, federalism in Nepal is an opportunity to work on family planning, as well as a challenge," she added.
However, the 2016 Nepal Demographic Health Survey (NDHS) shows the high unmet need for family planning services (24 percent married women of reproductive age) and even higher unmet need among married young women aged between 15-19 years (32 percent). There is also rising teenage pregnancies while marginal decline in maternal mortality ratio (currently 239 per 100,000 live births).
In order to strengthen family planning programs in Nepal, the FP2020, the umbrella organization of family planning programs, is holding regional meeting in Nepal in October.
Though US President Donald Trump announced last year to stop support for family planning programs, it has not significantly affected on the family planning programs, said Beth Schlachter, executive director of the FP2020.
According to the FP2020, as of July 2017, 309.3 million women and girls are using modern contraception in 69 FP2020 focus countries.