Family planning (FP) and maternal and child health (MCH) in Bangladesh have achieved commendable success in the recent past, mostly through a large-scale government service-delivery system supported by donors and nongovernmental organizations. Although encouraged by this success, there was concern about programmatic, financial, and social sustainability of the program, including quality of services. It is now believed that most of these concerns will be taken care of if effective community participation can be ensured. A pilot project was initiated in 1997 in Anowara, a low-FP-performing area in rural Chittagong, with assistance from the Population Council. The main objective of the project was to develop a strategy to ensure community participation in the FP-MCH program and to document the process. This report notes that community members became more aware of the population problem and came to know about existing service facilities and the role of various stakeholders, including themselves. As a result of the intervention, the demand for services increased and most of the service providers were responding positively to the growing demand.
Bhuiya, Abbas, Ubaidur Rob, and Maruf Rabban Quaderi. 1998. "Ensuring community participation in MCH/FP activities: Lessons learned from a pilot project in Anowara in rural Bangladesh," Final Report. Dhaka: Population Council.
Asia & Near East Operations Research and Technical Assistance Project