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Not sure why birth spacing is *that* important? Check out these numbers.

It's amazing to see how much better off we'd all be if we just focused a little more on the health of women around the world.

Not sure why birth spacing is *that* important? Check out these numbers.
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Gates Foundation

When you have *225 million* women in developing countries who want to avoid pregnancy but aren't using contraceptives...

...and *tens of millions* of women who don't receive the pregnancy and delivery care they need...

...you get some bad situations and big numbers:


Nearly 300,000 women will die from pregnancy-related causes.

Nearly 3 MILLION little baby newborns will not survive their first month.

... EVERY SINGLE YEAR. Holy wow. That's waaaay too many lives being lost, and here's something worth knowing about it:

If ALL women were able to receive the essential sexual and reproductive services that they need, positive changes *would* happen.

What kind of changes? Positive and proven changes like these:

  1. The number of unintended pregnancies and unsafe abortions would drop around the world. (Huge.)
  2. The number of women dying from pregnancy-related causes would drop by two-thirds. (2/3? Yes, please.)
  3. Newborn deaths would drop by more than three-fourths. (That's a lot of lives saved.)
  4. Transmission of HIV from mothers to newborns would be nearly eliminated. (Nearly eliminated means almost not even a thing!)

Those are four goals I'd like to think we can ALL support. Amirite?

Here's how we can get there:


When the "Me Too" movement exploded a few years ago, the ubiquitousness of women's sexual harassment and assault experiences became painfully clear. What hasn't always been as clear is role that less overt, more subtle creepiness plays in making women feel uncomfortable or unsafe as they move through the world, often starting from a young age.

Thankfully—and unfortunately—a viral video from a teen TikToker illustrates exactly what that looks like in real-time when a man came and sat down with her while she was doing a live video. He asked if the chair at her table was taken, and she said no, thinking he wanted to take it to another table. Instead, he sat down and started talking to her. You can see in her face and in her responses that she's weirded out, though she's trying not to appear rude or paranoid.

The teen said in a separate TikTok video that the man appeared to be in his 30s. Definitely too old to be pulling up a chair with someone so young who is sitting by herself, and definitely old enough to recognize that she was uncomfortable with the situation.

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Photo by Daniel Schludi on Unsplash
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The global eradication of smallpox in 1980 is one of international public health's greatest successes. But in 1966, seven years after the World Health Organization announced a plan to rid the world of the disease, smallpox was still widespread. The culprits? A lack of funds, personnel and vaccine supply.

Meanwhile, outbreaks across South America, Africa, and Asia continued, as the highly contagious virus continued to kill three out of every 10 people who caught it, while leaving many survivors disfigured. It took a renewed commitment of resources from wealthy nations to fulfill the promise made in 1959.

Forty-one years later, although we face a different virus, the potential for vast destruction is just as great, and the challenges of funding, personnel and supply are still with us, along with last-mile distribution. Today, while 30% of the U.S. population is fully vaccinated, with numbers rising every day, there is an overwhelming gap between wealthy countries and the rest of the world. It's becoming evident that the impact on the countries getting left behind will eventually boomerang back to affect us all.

Photo by ismail mohamed - SoviLe on Unsplash

The international nonprofit CARE recently released a policy paper that lays out the case for U.S. investment in a worldwide vaccination campaign. Founded 75 years ago, CARE works in over 100 countries and reaches more than 90 million people around the world through multiple humanitarian aid programs. Of note is the organization's worldwide reputation for its unshakeable commitment to the dignity of people; they're known for working hand-in-hand with communities and hold themselves to a high standard of accountability.

"As we enter into our second year of living with COVID-19, it has become painfully clear that the safety of any person depends on the global community's ability to protect every person," says Michelle Nunn, CARE USA's president and CEO. "While wealthy nations have begun inoculating their populations, new devastatingly lethal variants of the virus continue to emerge in countries like India, South Africa and Brazil. If vaccinations don't effectively reach lower-income countries now, the long-term impact of COVID-19 will be catastrophic."

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