Sorry guys and girls but for one week only we are switching Regional Spotlight to ‘International Spotlight’. Yes I know, it’s a little out of character but believe me, there is a very good reason for this. Some of you may not know it yet but today is actually World Population Day 2012, if you had never heard of it like me (prior to me penning this post of course) then that’s great news, because I’m about to tell you all about it.
No, this isn’t a day when world leaders boast about how big the population of their nation is. Rather, World Population Day is all about an individual’s right to access reproductive health services. Everyone on the planet has a right to access reproductive health, a goal that the UNFPA (United Nations Population Fund) expects to reach by the year 2015.
Their mission statement is partly illustrated in the company’s advertising:
Throughout the world today there are activities and campaigns taking place to raise awareness for the importance of family planning, gender equality, poverty, human rights and maternal health. These could be taking the form of seminar discussions, educational information sessions or even essay competitions within school and care centres.
The World Population Day was originally conceived in 1989 by the Governing Council of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). They were inspired to develop a greater awareness 0f family planning after the ‘Five Billion Day’ on July 11th 1987, when the world’s population reached approximately, yes you’ve guessed it, five billion people. This week on July 9th 2012 the world population reached 7,025,071,966 people, so after doing the maths it’s pretty easy to see that the world has increased by well over 2 billion people since 1989! Incredible statistics and an alarming growth rate.
Here is a great diagram that highlights the work of the United Nations Population Fund: