Divya Vohra, PhD Candidate and Aidan Tait, MD/MSPH Candidate
Divya and Aidan spent the summer investigating how Angolan women make decisions about pregnancy, childbearing, and family planning. Very little is known about the family planning needs of Angolan women; just six percent are currently using contraception, though many want to limit or space their births, and family planning services have historically been difficult to access. Divya and Aidan were interested in learning how and when women decided to have children, the role that their family or community members might play in those decisions, and what barriers might prevent them from using contraception at a time in their lives when they wanted to avoid a pregnancy.
With help from PSI Angola, Divya and Aidan conducted in-depth interviews with 28 women of reproductive age in health centers and local church groups in Luanda Province. They also spoke with local experts to gain a better understanding of the historical and structural reasons why Angolan women might choose not to use family planning.