Unlocking Communication is the Key

As attitudes to contraception shift in India, they must contend with the realities of joint-family households. In Jharkhand, government-initiated Sammelan meetings open lines of communication between couples and their in-laws, highlighting issues like spacing out births and the importance of male involvement. While mothers-in-law play a large role in family planning, men historically were left out of the conversation, found researcher Arundhati Char.

But contraceptive programs demanding strong communication proved promising. One village’s anonymous helpline connecting men to male health workers helped raised the prevalence rate of contraceptives. In Jharkhand free, CycleBeads used to track fertility were embraced by male partners.

Pulitzer Center

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