Indumati, her (now departed) mother-in-law and her three daughters-in-law represent three generations of women in Maharashtra, India who have benefitted from the services of Family Planning Association of India. All three generations have been a part of women’s collectives’ movement encouraging women to participate in the socio-economic life of the family and community.
Becoming a member of the women’s collectives helped Indumati to step beyond the boundaries of her home and begin participating in the community life of the village. Be it cleanliness drives in the village or celebrating all festivals with equal fervour created spaces for the women to contribute to the social wellbeing of the village. The next stop was micro-savings for economic independence. When the women realised that the women of their and neighbouring villages don’t have any healthcare services, they approached Family Planning Association of India (FPAI) to start a clinic in their area. When FPAI agreed the women’s group pooled money and contributed towards the building of the clinic.
With increased access to healthcare services came increased awareness. Most women’s group imparted training on SRHR to the collective members. Some collective members even began to stock the contraceptives provided by FPAI so that women could access them in privacy and confidentiality.
Indumati has three sons and one daughter. Each of her three sons has two children each. Her daughters-in-law were able to get information and adopted family planning methods due to her involvement with the women’s collectives. The inter-generational impact of access to family planning services is clearly visible in her household.