Our Priorities

The mission priorities of the Population International have been developed within the context of our strategic priorities in developing countries, especially those in conflicts and emergency contexts, but are also building on our regional and local contexts informed by a consultative process with the right-holders and other stakeholders, various local and international reviews, and contextual analysis of the political, social, environmental and economic factors. 

The broad program focus areas are Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights; Water, Sanitation and Hygiene; Migration, Refugees and Emergency Response; and Environment and Climate Justice. The rationale for the choice of these four priority areas is premised on the need to maximize program synergy and impact; deepen interventions in the areas where we have distinctive competence and experiences; and respond to the critical areas informed by our current context for greater impact on advancing universal public health and our overall anti-poverty efforts.

Sexual and Reproductive Heallth

Today, some 1.2 billion adolescents (aged 10-19 years) make up 16 percent of the world’s population. Access to quality sexual and reproductive health services (SRHR) and information is essential to protect their health and their ability to plan their lives. Yet around the world, harmful social norms, gender stereotypes, power imbalances, perceived need to control female sexuality and other inequalities make accessing information and services challenging, if not impossible for adolescents, especially girls.

Despite the decrease in the number of maternal deaths, at the current rate of progress, over an additional million women will lose their lives by 2030.

Water, Sanitation and Hygiene

Worldwide, 2.2 billion people still lack access to safe drinking water, more than half of the global population does not have access to safe sanitation, 3 billion people do not have access to handwashing facilities with soap, and some 673 million people practice open defecation.

The consequences of unsafe water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) on children can be deadly. Over 700 children under age 5 die every day of diarrhoeal diseases due to lack of appropriate WASH services. In areas of conflict, children are nearly 20 times more likely to die from diarrhoeal disease than from the conflict itself.

Refugees and Emergency Responses

Sub-Saharan Africa hosts more than 26 per cent of the world’s refugee population. That number has soared in recent years, partly due to ongoing crises in the Central African Republic (CAR), Nigeria and South Sudan. 

We work directly to ensure that the displaced people have access to integrated public health services and we create awareness to help reduce the risks of sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) and hygiene-related infections.

Environment and Climate Justice

Communities across the globe depend directly on our planet’s natural resources for food and livelihoods. Some 767 million people live on less than $2 a day, and 1 in 10 children are malnourished. 

The success of the poorest populations depends on thriving natural ecosystems.  Everyone should have the knowledge and tools to sustain their natural environment and generate economic opportunity.