Minister Mueller Supports Family Planning Project in Nigeria

The German Federal Minster for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) – Dr. Gerd Müller – was guest speaker on June 4th at the Rotary Convention in Hamburg. Upon his arrival in the “House of Friendship” Minister Müller first visited the information booth of the Rotarian Action Group for Population & Development (RFPD), where he was greeted by co-founder PDGs Robert Zinser (Germany) und Dolapo Lufadeju (Nigeria); see Photo. PDG Lufadeju presented him with a letter from the Nigerian Federal Ministry of Health regarding the fruitful cooperation with Rotary’s much-needed family planning campaign. During his subsequent speech at the plenary session Minister Müller remarked the challenge of population growth – especially in Africa – and the need for new methods of resolution. In this context he emphasized the “Nationwide Family Planning Campaign in Nigeria” as a lighthouse project of the German government, making an important contribution to the Marshall Plan with Africa. He expressed his thanks to the thousands of Rotarians present for their ongoing engagement and announced that the BMZ would co-fund this project with up to US $1.5 million.

Photo: Mark Zdunnek, Altruist Films

The large-scale project “Nationwide Family Planning Campaign in Nigeria” – financed by clubs and districts from Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Nigeria – was the focus of the first Rotary summit on Maternal and Child Health and the Convention Breakout Session „Replication and Expansion of Best Practices”. Through close collaboration with the Nigerian Federal Ministry of Health and the state ministries of health in all 37 states, this ambitious project strengthens the Nigerian health system through capacity building and increases access to professional family planning services, even in otherwise largely neglected areas.

Hundreds of clubs and many districts have already contributed through donations and DDFs. However, in order to utilize all possible matching funds, further support is still needed. RFPD therefore kindly requests all clubs to transfer a contribution of 500 EUR or more to the project account at RDG Düsseldorf by the end of June: IBAN DE80 3007 00100394 1200 00, Keyword Project 2468 (Nigeria). Districts who have not yet contributed are requested to pledge DDFs.

 World populations – especially in Africa – are growing at a rapid rate. Many women and men are limited in their autonomy due to lacking or insufficient access to family planning services. As Rotarians we have both the resources and the duty to engage with these decisive topics and achieve a sustainable and positive impact. Please ensure that your club does not pass up the opportunity to contribute to the prescient and important project!

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