Bikash Pokhrel

Bikash Pokhrel - 2016 Nominee
Position: Access Focal
Organization: Family Planning Association of Nepal
Mr. Pokhrel has over 10 years of experience in the field of Sexual and reproductive health programs including family planning programs too. His specialties are design and implementation of programs. – Subash Chandra Shrestha, Acting Program Director at Family Planning Association of Nepal
Describe your contributions to and achievements in family planning.

I have proven experience of over 10 years in the field of Sexual and reproductive health programs including family planning programs too. My specialties are design and implementation of reproductive health including adolescents and youth programs in community level as well as in national level. I have started my journey of passion by volunteering as peer educator, youth coordinator at earlier when i was just 11 years old. My initiative had galvanized my organization to make the amendment in constitution for the inclusion of youth from 7% to 21% in policy making level. Since 2013 i have diverted my profession from merely youth volunteer to branch manager then program officer and recently i'm leading the department of Access to SRH as a access focal in program division in central level.

What sparked your passion for family planning?

When I heard that FPAN is the first and a leading national NGO devoted to SRHR, which was established in 1959, and started family planning and SRH programs in Nepal, before the government launched its own Family Planning and Maternal and Child Health Project in 1969. It complements and supplements the national health and population programs. The socio-cultural barrier which was stopping myself to participate in sexual health programs at school level sparked my passion for the first time.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced in your family planning efforts, and what have you done to overcome it?

The biggest challenge was to raise the awareness of family planning services at community level through our youth group mobilization, but when we tried for more than 17 times and again, then we succeeded to convince the community leaders about our motto to keep the community safer by ensuring the universal access to sexual and reproductive health rights, then they allowed us to orient the out of school youths and the women of reproductive age about the importance of family planning services.

What is your (country/region/city)’s biggest challenge in family planning, and how can it be addressed?

Adolescent pregnancy is more common among low-income families, and is both a cause and result of low education. Adolescent pregnancy in Nepal is associated with early marriage. National Demographic Health Survey 2011 reveals that 27% of married women have an unmet need for family planning in Nepal.
In addition, low status, and low education and literacy levels of women have negative influence on access to health information and services.

What do you want to accomplish in the next 5 years?

Committed nation to respect, protect and fulfill sexual and reproductive health and rights and gender equality. The Constitution 2015 (2072 B.S.) of Nepal spelled out SRH rights as- “Every woman shall have the right to safe maternity and reproductive health”. Accordingly, we want sexual and reproductive health rights for all by the year 2020.

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