PROFAMIL is a national reproductive health champion. The organization provides critical services and essential information, allowing Haitian people to make decisions that serve their families and themselves.
As the country’s leading comprehensive sexual and reproductive health provider, PROFAMIL faces several challenges. Fertility rates in Haiti remain high (2.94 births per woman, compared with 1.73 births per woman in the United States). High fertility—coupled with lack of healthcare, poor infrastructure, and the effects of poverty—compounds already-frequent maternal deaths. Haiti’s maternal mortality rate remains the highest of any country in the Western hemisphere: Approximately one of every 80 women in Haiti will die from childbirth and pregnancy related causes. And one third of these maternal deaths are caused from complications from unsafe abortions.
Family planning methods are not widely available in Haiti. Women have limited access to health facilities that offer contraceptive methods, and cultural barriers persist, discouraging contraception. On top of restrictive abortion laws, PROFAMIL must battle environmental, educational, geographic, and cultural obstacles to providing sexual and reproductive healthcare to all Haitians. As an organization, PROFAMIL must put itself on the front lines to ensure that every Haitian has access to the care they need.
Despite these challenges, PROFAMIL continues to serve the Haitian people. The organization provides comprehensive sexual health education to parents, students, and community members. By empowering community leaders as educators, PROFAMIL reaches Haitians in both rural and urban communities. The organization’s youth program now includes 80 peer educators who serve as agents of change and advocate for family planning.
What’s more, PROFAMIL has engaged in numerous successful campaigns to promote family planning methods. In 2018, PROFAMIL celebrated World Contraception Day with a health fair that provided free services to more than 1,000 Haitian citizens (including prenatal consultations, gynecological consultations, cancer screenings, Pap tests, sonograms, and contraception). In the same year, PROFAMIL ran a non-scalpel vasectomy campaign, encouraging Haitian fathers to be “heroes” for their families. In just one day, PROFAMIL performed 93 vasectomies.
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