We are excited to announce the success of our first accessible Family Planning campaign in Puerto Pinzon, a rural Colombian community buffering our ProAves El Paujil Reserve. Women for Conservation and ProAves partnered with Profamilia to provide women with free and voluntary access to family planning and information about their reproductive rights. From March 29-31st, 60 women in Puerto Pinzon chose to receive contraceptive implants to plan their pregnancies, which will reduce stress on local endangered wildlife and ecosystems.
Accessible Family Planning as Conservation Solution
Facilitating accessible reproductive healthcare is considered a top solution to curbing global climate emissions and preventing the worst outcomes of human created climate change. On the local level, allowing women to plan their families helps girls finish school, reduces strain on limited natural resources, and gives women the freedom to join our conservation training programs.
ProAves and Women for Conservation understand that healthy communities are better equipped to become stewards of nature, while also allowing women to overcome gendered barriers to pursuing conservation work. We facilitate free and voluntary access to family planning and reproductive healthcare education in order to make it accessible to all women.
Through the gender empowerment and family planning program, we contribute to wildlife and ecosystems conservation in areas such as the Serranía de las Quinchas, between the municipalities of Puerto Boyacá, Bolívar, and Cimitarra in the departments of Boyacá and Santander, where our ProAves El Paujil Reserve is located, dedicated to the conservation of the Blue-billed Curassow, a critically endangered endemic species of Colombia. This reserve is also a focus area according to the research of and Alliance for Zero Extinction (AZE) and Key Biodiversity Areas (KBA) .
“We are convinced of the importance of family planning programs for women’s empowerment, which will directly mitigate climate impact, while also conserving local wildlife habitat.” affirmed Sara Inés Lara, Executive Director of ProAves and Women for Conservation.
For many women in Puerto Pinzón, this was their first ever opportunity to access comprehensive reproductive healthcare, as they are far from urban cities and lack access to adequate health centers.
The campaign has made it possible for women to have autonomy over their bodies and decide how many children they want to have. It will allow dozens of young girls to graduate high school and fulfill their dreams of becoming the first in their families to receive a university education. Many of the first teenage girls we empowered with contraceptive implants in 2020 are now starting university, pursuing degrees in Education, Rural Sustainable Development Studies, and Biology, among other things.
Ciria Torres, our Local Women for Conservation community organizer in Puerto Pinzón, spoke to the significance of this program to the girls and women of her community.
“We have never before had a family planning campaign in Puerto Pinzón, but today for the first time it has arrived. We began this new program because we live very far from the city, which makes it difficult for women to have this procedure because they have to travel many times to the city. It is difficult for women of Puerto Pinzon to make this long journey, on top of the high price of transportation and lodging expenses in the urban area.
Women for Conservation and ProAves (and profamilia) are covering the cost of this entire process, which helps this region. (Lack of reproductive healthcare) leads to the stresses of population pressure, as inhabitants are very poor and do not have sufficient economic resources to provide quality of life for their children.” – Ciria Torres
Women for Conservation and ProAves are proud to have facilitated the first family planning campaign for women in Puerto Pinzón and to provide healthcare to rural women living far from medical centers.
Empowered women, the protectors of nature!
Thanks to the support of: