Editorial by Isabel Carter

Working with people to encourage rural development is a slow process. Whether your work is in health, agriculture, water supplies or some other subject, you will know that improving the quality of people’s lives is a gradual process.

But the world population, on the other hand, is increasing more and more rapidly. The slow progress made in establishing adequate health care or better water supplies may not be able to keep up with the growing population in your area. This is why awareness of population pressures and the need for family spacing to encourage happy, healthy families, is the concern not just of family planning clinics, but of all Christians who care about their communities.

Please find below articles from Footsteps issue 3.

To download a pdf version of Footsteps issue 3, please click here (PDF 3.3 MB).

  • An effective caring family planning programme

    Drs Steve and Margaret Brown with Marian Storkey. Does your area have an effective and caring family planning programme, or are you considering how to improve or set up such a programme? Whatever the situation in your area, here are four key points to think about.

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  • Bible study: Family spacing

    Family planning is a sensitive issue about which Christians may have very different views. This study may help you to think more about your beliefs, and what your attitude should be towards others who may have opposite views.

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  • Controlling pests wisely

    Imagine you work as an agricultural extension agent and have to make decisions about pesticides. Pesticide companies may encourage you to use their products. Farmers will ask for advice. Government booklets may recommend a certain treatment.

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  • Family planning saves lives…

    The lives of 5.6 million children and 200,000 women could all be saved each year if all the women who wanted to limit their families had access to family planning.

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  • Fatima's choice

    By Dr Margaret Brown. This is a true story from Bangladesh, helping us to understand several points about a family planning programme.

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  • Letters

    Nurturing community participation? I work in community health with the Prem Sewa Hospital, Utraula, India. At present we are training two women to join our team as field supervisors.

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  • Practical methods for spacing families

    There are many ways of helping couples to space their families. The most suitable method depends on what is available, the needs of the couple, and on their beliefs about which methods are appropriate.

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  • Resources

    Aids, Sex and Family Planning – A Christian View By Dr K Baker and H Ward, Africa Christian Press, 1989.

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  • Space technology on the farm

    By Jim Rowland. Anything that grows requires food, water, an energy supply and space. This is true whether we are talking about humans (especially children!), livestock, trees or crops. Human beings grow best where there are plenty of these resources and struggle, or die where there are not enough. Poor soil and over-population produce famine.

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  • The growing world population

    With a 3% population growth rate…The population will double every 20 years.   Every gardener knows that plants placed close together do not grow well! In the same way, spacing births helps produce heavier children. Because they can have more of their mother's attention, they are healthier and do better at school. Children are twice as likely to survive if they are born two to three years apart than if they are born every year or so.

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