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29 April 2016.

FAMILY PLANNING ASSOCIATION AND IFU JOIN FORCES IN NEW PROJECT

Family Planning Association and the Investment Fund for Developing Countries join forces in a new partnership to promote women's rights and health in developing countries.

Family Planning Association and the Investment Fund for Developing Countries (IFU) have launched a new partnership that focuses on women’s rights and health.

The goal of the project is to show that by strengthening women’s rights and health, IFU’s project companies can benefit both their female employees and their business. Through the partnership, concrete tools will be developed for IFU’s project companies as well as other companies to use in order to promote women’s rights and health. The tools and other project results will be shared at a conference in Denmark at a later point.

– We are extremely pleased to enter into this new partnership with IFU as the fund reaches project companies in a number of developing countries and sectors and has a huge potential for making a positive difference for female employees, said Tania Dethlefsen, Secretary-General at Family Planning Association Deputy. She continues;

– It is well documented that investments in women in the labour marketstrengthens the companies’ bottom line, the individual woman, herfamily and society. We know that 90 per cent of a woman’s income is reinvested in the children and the family to which the comparison is 30-40 per cent for men.

The partnership will run over the next two years and the expectations are to learn more about which initiatives IFU’s project companies have already implemented and with this knowledge motivate more companies to actively introduce new initiatives.

By investing in women’s health and rights in the workplace, companies typically get a USD 3 in return for every USD 1 they invest. These investments can for example be related to the provision of health insurance, maternity leave, access to health facilities or information. The companies benefit both socially and financially from these investments as they may reduce absenteeism, increase retention of female employees and provide a higher productivity.

– With the ambitious new Sustainable Development Goals that were launched last year, it is clear that companies must also play an active role if these goals are to be met by 2030. Through this partnership we hope to take an important step towards motivating IFU’s project companies to contribute particularly to goal 3 on health and goal 5 on gender equality and to see that this is a win-win situation for both women and businesses, said Tommy Thomsen, CEO at IFU.