Healthier Women Build Stronger Families & Communities

On World Population Day, UN Foundation Chairman & Founder Ted Turner Urges Investment In International Reproductive Health, Voluntary Family Planning As Way To Empower Women, Build Sustainable Communities

Washington, D.C.

July 11, 2011


Megan Rabbitt

On World Population Day, United Nations Foundation Founder and Chairman Ted Turner released the following statement urging global investment in international reproductive health and voluntary family planning as the best way to empower women and build more sustainable families and communities.

“This October, the world’s population size is projected to grow to 7 billion – a population growth that has more than tripled during my lifetime. According to a Council on Foreign Relations report, “Family Planning and U.S. Foreign Policy,” increased usage of modern family planning has led to an overall global decline of the average number of children being born to each individual woman. However, the reproductive health needs of many women in developing countries still remain unmet.

“The report also finds that there are 215 million women who want – but do not have – access to quality reproductive health and voluntary family planning services and education. Investing in voluntary family planning gives women the tools they need to make critical decisions about the size of their families and spacing of their pregnancies. The Guttmacher Institute estimates that every dollar spent on contraceptive services to help women prevent unintended pregnancies saves $1.40 in maternal and newborn health care costs.

“The choice is clear, and the solution is simple: investing in voluntary family planning puts families on a path that leads to healthier mothers and children, more opportunities for children to go to school and mothers to work, and more families being able to feed and support the children they already have. Global leaders should join the international community in prioritizing funding for these necessary programs and empowering women with the tools and resources to re-shape their futures.”

Learn more about how international reproductive health and voluntary family planning are making a difference in women’s lives at


About the United Nations Foundation 
The United Nations Foundation, a public charity, was created in 1998 with entrepreneur and philanthropist Ted Turner’s historic $1 billion gift to support UN causes and activities.  We build and implement public/private partnerships to address the world’s most pressing problems, and work to broaden support for the UN through advocacy and public outreach.  Through our campaigns and partnerships, we connect people, ideas, and resources to help the UN solve global problems.  These campaigns focus on reducing child mortality, empowering women and girls, creating a new energy future, securing peace and human rights, and promoting technology innovation to improve health outcomes.  These solutions are helping the UN advance the eight global targets known as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).  For more information, visit