IN a bid to enhance a better landscape of Family Planning and Child Spacing in Nigeria, media professionals from Ogun, Kebbi, Nasarawa, Niger and Gombe states have been trained to strengthen their knowledge base in order to complement Family Planning Advocacy efforts in the country.
Country Director, Pathfinder International, organisers of a three-day Advance Family Planning (AFP) SMART Advocacy Refresher Workshop for Media Professionals, in Abuja, Farouk Jega, said the active involvement of governments, at all levels, and other relevant stakeholders, including media professionals, would help the country in achieving the targeted national blue print on Contraceptive Prevalence Rate (CPR).
Jega identified inadequate funding and logistics challenges among others, as factors affecting the uptake and free access of Family Planning (FP) services in the country.
“There had been family planning services to Nigerians free of charge in our public facilities.
“We are hoping that because of the very unique skills and privilege that you have during the work that you do, you will help us to amplify our voices, so that we will have better policies, funding and more enabling environment for family planning,” he said.
In her presentation, Communication and Media Officer, Somto Atuanya, debunked some of the problems affecting FP, which included myths and misconceptions, emphasising the need for the media to engage in adequate findings on the benefits of child spacing.
In their separate contributions, the Programme Officers, Reproductive Health and Family Planning, Yusuf Nuhu and Kosi Izundu, highlighted the roles of decision makers, academia, educators among others, in achieving any target objectives in family planning services.
Participants, Kalu Idika and Abdullah Ibrahim said the indices showed the situation of FP in various states, the need for media practitioners to set agenda for policy makers and create a level of awareness, so that every aspect of FP would be accepted and funded.