The key strength of the program for reducing overpopulation in Bangladesh, one of the poorest countries, is the recognition of women’s rights in terms of family planning. An important strong point of the set of initiatives is that it was based on the considerations about the quality of health of women and children in large families. Apart from that, when it comes to strengths, it is pivotal to note that the methods of fertility reduction involved providing access to health and family planning education. Finally, the strength area of the program is presented by its long-term results: as is shown in modern studies, “fertility rates continued to decline in Bangladesh in the 1990s” (Duvendack & Palmer-Jones, 2016, p. 680).
The weaknesses of the program aimed at the popularization of fertility control methods primarily refer to the choice of setting and interventions. First, taking into account the economic and demographic situation in Bangladesh in the middle of the 1970s, the decision to choose this location was considered weak (Duvendack & Palmer-Jones, 2016). More than that, some initiatives such as the employment of outreach workers responsible for the provision of resources and education were rather costly (Duvendack & Palmer-Jones, 2016).
Since the 1970s, the decline in fertility rates in Bangladesh has decreased due to a variety of economic and social reasons (Duvendack & Palmer-Jones, 2016). Based on that, the opportunities for improvement include testing other outreach strategies. Also, new approaches that help to reduce the costs of patient education are required.
The economic situation in Bangladesh still presents a threat to the well-being of women and their children (Duvendack & Palmer-Jones, 2016). Given the presence of a gender gap in education and measures aimed at male involvement in decision-making, women can be at a disadvantage in many conflicting situations.
Duvendack, M., & Palmer-Jones, R. (2016). Micro-finance, women’s empowerment and fertility decline in Bangladesh: How important was women’s agency? The Journal of Development Studies, 53(5), 664-683.