Every fourth Thursday in November, Americans celebrate Thanksgiving—a holiday dedicated to giving thanks for whatever and whomever we are grateful to have in our lives. In honor of this U.S. tradition, we are asking people around the world why they are thankful for contraception.
There are many reasons to be thankful for contraception. Contraception provides young people the choice to determine their own future. Modern contraceptive use prevents 3.1 million unintended adolescent pregnancies each year. When adolescents are able to avoid unintended pregnancy they are more likely to stay in school and to earn a greater income throughout their lifetime. This is true for both adolescent mothers and fathers; boys who become fathers are also less likely to complete secondary school than their non-parenting peers. Preventing unintended pregnancies among adolescents also reduces the number of maternal deaths worldwide—adolescent pregnancy and pregnancy-related complications are the number one cause of death among female adolescents. Finally, condoms play a dual role: they help prevent against pregnancy and HIV infection. By preventing early or unintended pregnancy and HIV infection, contraception saves lives and improves educational and employment opportunities for young people.
We are thankful for the millions of lives contraception saves and for the opportunities it provides not only young people, but all women and men worldwide. That is why this Thanksgiving we want to know why YOU are thankful for contraception. Log on to our Facebook page and tell us about the positive effects that access to contraceptives has had on your life, or why you are grateful for the promise contraception holds for all people worldwide.