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[Unpublished] 1987. 13,  p.Africa's colonial legacy is such that countries contain not only a multiplicity of nations and languages, but their governments operate on separate cultural and linguistic planes, remnants of colonial heritage, so that neighboring peoples often have closed borders. Another problem is poor demographic data, although some censuses, World Fertility Surveys, Demographic Sample Surveys and Contraceptive Prevalence Surveys have been done. About 470 million lived in the region in 1984, growing at 3% yearly, ranging from 1.9% in Burkina to 4.6% in Cote d'Ivoire. Unique in Africa, women are not only having 6 to 8.1 children, but they desire even larger families: Senegalese women have 6.7 children and want 8.8. This gloomy outlook is reflected in the recent history of family planning policy. Only Ghana, Kenya and Mauritius began family planning in the 1960s, and in Kenya the policy failed, since it was begun under colonial rule. 8 countries made up the African Regional Council for IPPF in 1971. At the Bucharest Population Conference in 1974, most African representatives, intellectuals and journalists held the rigid view that population was irrelevant for development. Delegates to the Kilimanjaro conference and the Second International Conference on Population, however, did espouse the importance of family planning for health and human rights. And the Inter-Parliamentary Union of Africa accepted the role of family planning in child survival and women's status. At the meeting in Mexico in 1984, 12 African nations joined the consensus of many developing countries that rapid population growth has adverse short-term implications on development. Another 11 countries allow family planning for health and human rights, and a few more accept it without stating a reason. Only 3 of 47 Sub-Saharan nations state pro-natalist policies, and none are actively against family planning.
Novum. 1983 May; (23):10-1.To encourage family planning, a mobile health clinic will be sent to a village when child clinics are held in the Gambia, so that women may receive family planning advice. All methods are used; the Pill is the most popular. There are around 3000 family planning acceptors. The Gambia Family Planning Association (GFPA) supplies condomes and pessaries were needed. The Association sells contraceptives to private doctors at a discount. Supplies are also available in hospitals. The average family has 6 children. Seminars on family planning have been held. The GFPA trains extension workers in family planning. The infant mortality rate is 217/1000 live births; 40% of the children die before the age of 5. Breastfeeding has been a problem. Many children are malnourished. The GFPA is staffed by 1 doctor; a senior nursing sister, a nursing sister, clinical assistants, and rural fieldworkers. There are 5 main clinics. The GFPA's staff teach family life education to schoolchildren. Planned parenthood/women's development projects are also taking place. The GFPA is largely funded by the IPPF.