EngenderHealth is a leading global women’s health organization committed to ensuring that every pregnancy is planned, every child is wanted, and every mother has the best chance at survival. In 20 countries around the world, we train health care professionals and partner with governments and communities to make high-quality family planning and sexual and reproductive health services available—today and for generations to come.
The organization was established in 1943 and provided access to voluntary surgical contraception in the United States during its first 25 years. Today, EngenderHealth works to improve the health and well-being of people in the poorest communities of the world
In the course of its existence, EngenderHealth has undergone changes in name and mission, reflecting internal debate, shifts in public policy, and changes in public opinion and international awareness. The organisation has been described as a prime example of how the modern US family planning movement was shaped by three overlapping but distinguishable social forces, i.e. the eugenics movement, the movement for (female) reproductive rights and the population control movement (Critchlow, 1995).
EngenderHealth has worked in Nigeria since 1985, and since 2007 we have focused on preventing and treating obstetric fistula, a devastating childbirth injury. To do so, we train doctors and nurses to perform fistula repair surgery, and we partner with hospitals and health centers to improve or introduce emergency obstetric care so that laboring women who reach a hospital in time will not develop fistula. In addition, we support health facilities in building awareness about fistula prevention, maternal health, and family planning services. From 2007 to 2013, we trained more than 450 Nigerian nurses and doctors to perform fistula repair surgery, and we supported 10,284 fistula repair surgeries.
Our work today continues to strengthen fistula prevention and treatment in Nigeria by expanding our efforts to build community awareness and increasing our focus on the integration of family planning services with fistula and maternal health care.