Globally, there are 214 million women without access to contraception, this has led to a healthcare crisis.
Of this figure, 25 million resorted to unsafe abortions to end their pregnancy, leading to up to 31,000 women dying from complications and millions more left seriously ill or long-term disabled.
The numbers themselves are shocking, but they don’t tell the whole story. For behind every number is the story of an individual woman being denied the right to control her body and her future.
We serve women and girls all over the world who are at a stage in their lives when they feel an unintended pregnancy would be too high a price to pay.
At Marie Stopes International we provide women and girls with contraception, safe abortion and post-abortion care services, so they can choose when or whether to have children and have a better chance to reach their full potential.
Our services aren't simply about preventing women from getting pregnant - we believe it’s also about empowering women through choice. Having a choice about the number of children she has, and when she has them, can truly transform a woman’s life. It means being able to continue with education, pursue a career, care for the children she already has, or simply space her pregnancies to improve her own health.
And those benefits won’t stop there - when a woman has access to this vital healthcare she and her children are usually healthier, better educated and have better economic prospects. This in turn can transform whole societies as women are freed up to participate more fully in their communities and contribute to the economy.
We want to make sure that as many women as possible can get hold of our services, so we work particularly hard to reach those who are most marginalised and under-served.
Almost 80% of the women we reach can be defined as 'high impact', meaning they fall into at least one of the following groups, those:
Women who belong to these groups often face multiple obstacles when it comes to accessing contraception and reproductive healthcare. So when we’re able to reach them we see the highest impact, the ripples of which extend to every corner of society.
In 2018, over 10% of the clients we reached were aged under 20, but we know we must do more to reach young women and girls.
If you empower a woman, life becomes well for the whole family
To make our services truly effective we listen to women and understand the realities of their lives. In some of the countries we work, women defer to their husbands to make decisions about contraception. In others, religious or cultural restrictions may confine them to the home. In situations like these the way we reach women will differ – we don’t do one-size fits all approaches.
We’ve been providing life-changing reproductive health services for over 40 years. We work hard to make sure these services are high quality, affordable and accessible to as many people as possible.
We don’t do one-size-fits-all approaches. We work hard to understand our clients and their unique challenges, tailoring our services and solutions accordingly.
Our mission is life-changing for millions of women around the world, and in 2018 we continued to expand our reach.
unintended pregnancies averted
unsafe abortions averted
maternal deaths averted
We will be there for women for the long term, and we want to continue being their preferred choice. That means we will keep giving a voice to women and girls, using their insights to inform the quality of our care and services.
Over the next five years we intend on reaching even more women and girls, preventing 58 million unintended pregnancies, averting 34 million unsafe abortions, and 118,900 maternal deaths.
Our Scaling-Up Excellence strategy sets out in more detail how we’re going to reach record numbers of women.
We serve women, young people, communities and those living in fragile states, empowering them with the freedom to choose when or if they have children.
We empower young people to choose when or whether they have children, giving them the greatest chance of fulfilling their potential.
Our teams belong to the communities they serve, building meaningful relationships that help them break down barriers and reach as many people as possible.
Sexual and reproductive healthcare is a life-saving component of any humanitarian response. We work in partnership to reach women in fragile states, conflict zones, and during natural disasters.