By Dalitso Masambuka
“It hasn’t been easy raising 29 children, I have found it hard to provide for all of them, though it seemed too late I decided enough is enough and underwent vasectomy provided by BLM three years ago.”
In Phalombe District, Chief Luwani is being an exemplary leader, at 66 years old and with 29 children with three different wives, the elderly chief decided enough is enough and underwent vasectomy that Banja la Mtsogolo offers freely in hard to reach areas through funding from the Department for International Development (DFID).
While a variety of modern contraceptive methods are available for women in sub-Saharan Africa, men's options for modern methods are more limited: condoms and vasectomy. And in many parts of Southern Africa and Malawi they are usually greeted with myth and misconceptions.
“Most people think Vasectomy takes away a man’s manhood, but those are pure lies, the procedure did not in any way affect me” says Chief Luwaniwa who is now able to easily reach out to his subject since he is a direct beneficially,
“Being a direct beneficially has made it easy for me to reach out to my subjects on the benefits of family planning, some witnessed on how I struggled to raise a big family” he says
Only 3 percent of couples worldwide use vasectomy as their primary contraceptive method, even though it is permanent, safe, and cost-effective—and the only long-acting contraception available for men. The rate is even lower in sub-Saharan Africa: Less than 0.1 percent of married women rely on a partner's vasectomy as a contraceptive method.
Banja la Mtsogolo though funding from DFID is not only providing family planning options to women alone, but to men in hard to reach areas through its vast network of outreach teams in Malawi.
Dalitso is the Communications Officer for Banja la Mtsogolo, working for the Behaviour Change and Communication (BCC) team.