January 23, 2012

By Patricia Maloney: There is a best way to get money from CIDA–and there is a worst way.

The best way involves telling CIDA you’ll give out lots and lots and lots of condoms to third world countries. International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) did this, along with promising all kinds of other contraception methods/abortifacients including emergency contraception and IUDs.

According to a recent Access to Information Request I did with CIDA, I learned that in IPPF’s proposal for $6 million of funding, IPPF promised to deliver :

1,229,092 Couple years of protection (CYP)

7,090,090 family planning services (FP)

3,738,052 sexual reproductive health (SRH) services (excluding family planning) and

5,738,052 SRH services provided to young people under the age of 25 (including family planning)

The worst way to get funding is to be MaterCare. Their applications for funding, have now been denied for eleven years in a row.

In their 2004 refusal from CIDA, MaterCare were told that one of the reasons their funding request was refused was because—are you ready for this? Because their project [West African regional Birth Trauma Centre in Ghana] was:

“aimed at curing the problem rather than preventing it from taking place”.

MaterCare was trying to cure a problem of maternal child mortality. Oh my goodness, what were they thinking?

In Matercare’s 2008 refusal, CIDA said:

there was concern that MaterCare’s approach to the subject matter is not consistent with CIDA’s policies on maternal health.CIDA’s approach to improving maternal health and reducing maternal mortality includes access to reproductive health care and family planning, themes that were not addressed in MaterCare’s proposal…”

Why? Because MaterCare won’t give out lots and lots and lots of condoms. Simple really.

And how does birth control save women’s lives? They don’t, not according to MaterCare:

Abortion and birth control are irrelevant to reducing maternal mortality as most deaths occur during the last 3 months of pregnancy, during labour and delivery and one week afterwards. It is egregious to suggest to mothers that in order to save their own lives they must kill their babies, rather than to provide them with safe comprehensive maternity care. Early abortion is being promoted, by oral medication, and surgical means using manual vacuum aspirators (MVAs). The problem with these procedures is that having been given the pills or having undergone and MVA, the mother is sent home where bleeding or infection may result but she has no access to medical follow-up. Many African mothers are anemic due to malnutrition and malaria and with post abortion haemorrhage or infection death may well occur. In addition, these MVA kits are supposed to be for one time use only but as we know with injection needles and AIDS there is no assurance that they will not be used again, and as they cannot be sterilized, further use may result in spreading infection and leading to more maternal deaths.

To deny the provision of essential obstetrics is a form of violence against women. Violence may be by commission i.e. a person is physically assaulted in some way, or by omission i.e. by culpable negligence not to have done what is necessary – in this case, providing essential care during pregnancy and childbirth.”

See here for MaterCare’s full statement released in October last year on how they continue to be banned from receiving funding from CIDA.

Which brings me back to IPPF and my recent ATIP, on which I will write more later.

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