Family Planning: Empowering People, Developing Nations | Western Cape Government

Family Planning: Empowering People, Developing Nations


Photo of small and happy familyFamily planning helps you to have the size family that you can afford. Smaller families will also impact positively on our nation’s social and economic development.

Family planning

Access to safe, voluntary family planning is a human right and is a key factor in reducing poverty. We want to ensure that all residents of the Western Cape have access to family planning resources. If you want to avoid pregnancy and would like to find out more about family planning and contraceptivesvisit your local clinic to speak to a nurse who'll advise you.

According to World Health Organization (WHO), the 6 benefits of family planning are:

  • Preventing pregnancy-related health risks in women: 
    Family planning allows spacing of pregnancies and can delay pregnancies in young women at increased risk of health problems and death from early childbearing. It also enables women who wish to limit the size of their families to do so. Evidence suggests that women who have more than 4 children are at increased risk of maternal mortality.
  • Reducing infant mortality: 
    Family planning can prevent closely spaced and ill-timed pregnancies and births, which contribute to some of the world’s highest infant mortality rates.
  • Helping to prevent HIV/AIDS​: 
    Family planning reduces the risk of unintended pregnancies among women living with HIV, resulting in fewer infected babies and orphans.
  • Empowering people and enhancing education: 
    Family planning enables people to make informed choices about their sexual and reproductive health. Having smaller families allows parents to invest more in each child. Children with fewer siblings tend to stay in school longer than those with many siblings.
  • Reducing adolescent pregnancies: 
    Pregnant adolescents are more likely to have preterm or low birth-weight babies. Babies born to adolescents have higher rates of neonatal mortality.
  • Slowing population growth: 
    Family planning is key to slowing unsustainable population growth and the resulting negative impacts on the economy, environment, and national and regional development efforts.

Smaller families

Photo of a small family relaxingOur population will be positively impacted when we use family planning resources and we think about the benefits of having smaller families. At times, religion, culture and economic factors influence couples when deciding on the size of the family. It’s been proven that the smaller the family, the greater the benefits.

Benefits of smaller families

  • Children receive more attention from their parents.
  • Children with one or no siblings do better in education.
  • Children prosper more economically and socially.
  • Parents with fewer children can manage their finances better.
  • ​Parents can have more time dedicated to their work or other aspects of their lives.

Need advice?

Our Department of Social Development offers a wide range of services and opportunities to support you and your family’s needs.

Read more on the implications of having a child below.

The content on this page was last updated on 30 June 2020