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How mothers are grappling with myth and misconceptions to embrace family planning.

Written by on 25/06/2022

By: Akugizibwe Victor

Supported by CHEHURD

Women in rural communities of Kibaale district in western Uganda are struggling to cut through a plethora of myth and misconceptions to embrace family planning. The slow uptake of family planning services is according to experts contributing to rapid population growth something that is exerting pressure on resources.

Interviewing Women in Nyamihindo Village, Bwamiramira Sub county Kibaale District about Family Planning

Margret Nalubega a resident of Busesa Kasaraba in Matale Sub County says she has failed to embrace family planning because of bad things she has been hearing about it from other women.

//Cue in————- Margret Nalubega//

Joyce Tumushabemukama a mother of five a resident of Nyamihindo village in Bwamiramira sub county, Kibaale district says she enrolled for family planning services for three years without informing her husband. She left it after fearing that her husband would turn against her.

//Cue in————– Joyce Tumushabemukama——–1//

Unlike other women, Tushabemukama says that she has never experienced any life threatening complication with family planning apart from simple pain the lower abdomen.

 //Cue in————— Joyce Tumushabemukama——–2//

Julie Tusiime of Rukindo village, Kibaale town has been using an Intra Uterine Devise for the last two years. She was first sensitized by health workers at a health facility to dispel her fears.

//Cue in————– JULIE TUSIIME//

Another mother who identifies herself as Josephine Nalongo says she left family planning because of lack of sexual appetite and over bleeding during her menstrual periods.

//Cue in————– Josephine Nalongo//

Rev Samuel Kwesiga the programmes coordinator with USAID Pathfinder family planning activity says there is low uptake and embracement of family planning in rural communities because of lack of access to information and services.

//Cue in————– REV SAMUEL KWESIGA—1//

Kwesiga says there is a challenge of myth and misconceptions among people like some men who complain of being injured by the Intra Uterine Devise (IUDs) during sexual intercourse.

//Cue in—————– REV SAMUEL KWESIGA—2//

Pastor Mugisha precious attached to Karuguza Seventh Day Adventist church says that family planning is a make-up of God for betterment of families.

//Cue in———- PASTOR MUGISHA PRECIOUS—1//

He adds that as the church, they are sensitizing people by dispelling off the misconceptions they have about family planning.

//Cue in————- PASTOR MUGISHA PRECIOUS—2//

What health workers say

Dr Richard Lubega the director of Busesa health Center in Matale sub county, Kibaale district says mothers should not just enroll on family planning methods before a critical assessment by qualified personnel. He reveals that in most cases, mothers go to health facilities with a predetermined mind on the family planning method she wants different from what would be the advice of a health personnel.

//Cue in———– RICHARD LUBEGA—1//

Lubega admits that there are some side effects that come with some hormonal family planning methods.

//Cue in————— RICHARD LUBEGA—2//

He says there has been a reported increase in numbers of people seeking for family planning since the outbreak of covid-19 pandemic.

//Cue in—————- RICHARD LUBEGA—3//

Sister Josephine Tibenderana a midwife at Kibaale health center four says the family planning challenges are being escalated by lack of mutual agreement in couples.

//Cue in———- SISTER JOSEPHINE TIBENDERANA//

According to the Ugandan Government Family Planning 2030 Commitments, the Government of Uganda recognizes the role family planning will play in achievement of Uganda Vision 2040 target to reduce population growth rate from 3.2% to 2.4% that will result into reaping the demographic dividend.

Population experts worried

Jacob Bombo the Kibaale district planner says the district population growth rate currently stand at 5.9 and the fertility rate standards at 7 which is a high number for the district to hold in terms of resource provision. He says low family planning uptake has also factored the population growth.

// Cue in———— JACOB BOMBO—-1//

He adds that uncontrolled population growth is likely to plunge people into unemployment and domestic violence because of limited survival resources like land. He says there is need for sensitization of local people on embracing family planning as one of the major ways of controlling population growth.

//Cue in————– JACOB BOMBO—-2//

Family planning (FP) is defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) as a voluntary and informed decision by an individual or couple on the number of children to have and when to have them. According to the 2013 WHO fact sheet on FP, “it is achieved mainly through use of various contraceptive methods and treatment of involuntary infertility.

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