Nine-Year-Old in Niger State Clearly Sees How Family Planning Could Benefit His Large Family

by | Dec 5, 2018

Mohammed (left) with three of his five siblings.

During a neighborhood family planning campaign in Mokwa LGA in Niger State, Nigeria, an inquisitive nine-year-old boy named Mohammed overheard a social mobilizer speaking with one of his relatives about child birth spacing. Upon hearing the benefits, Mohammed immediately thought about his mother and how family planning could change her life and that of his family. So he invited the social mobilizer to come speak with his mother.

The social mobilizer was struck by how thoughtful and brave the child was for his age. She asked Mohammed what he knew about child birth spacing. 

“My mum gets pregnant every year and hardly has time to take care of us because she is always taking care of a baby. I overheard you talking to my uncle and I think mum needs it [child birth spacing method],” Mohammed replied.

The social mobilizer then accompanied him to his home and spoke with his mother about child birth spacing. Mohammed’s mother immediately expressed interest in family planning and accepted the referral card to a facility to obtain family planning services.

Joking about his large family size, Mohammed said “At last, we can know how many children are in this family. Just when we think we are nine, we become 10.”  

The fact that at nine years old, Mohammed recognizes the value of family planning can be life changing for him – especially as he grows into a young sexually active man. His knowledge and positive attitude towards family planning can help keep him healthy now and into the future when he has his own family.