Use Of Female Condoms Gains Momentum
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good to know that women can now initiate safe sex through
the use of the female condom and not just rely on their partner’s
use of the rubber contraceptive. Many women in African countries are
more than glad to know about this latest method and it’s important
to note that the use of female condoms is now being widely promoted
A good example is Nigeria where a non-government organization assisting
HIV-positive people in the southern part of the country conducts regular
seminars that aim to teach women the proper way to use the female
condom. It is estimated that some 2.9 million Nigerians are positive
for HIV and almost four percent of the country’s population
between the ages of 15 and 49 are infected with the virus.
The Living Hope Care NGO is now taking the necessary steps to widely
promote the female condom in a bid
to combat the spread of HIV and AIDS. This organization was actually
founded in 1994 by a former Nigerian nurse identified as Fakande Ibiyemi.
She formed the organization after an experience that struck her. In
the hospital where she worked, a man was brought in after trying to
hang himself following his discovery of having contracted HIV. Today,
the Living Hope Care provides assistance, job training, micro-credit,
free meals and treatment for more than 2,000 HIV-positive people.
It is closely working with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA)
by providing condoms to target people in an effort to prevent the
spread of HIV/AIDS.
Proper Method Of Use
The female condom looks very similar to the male condom and
follows the same principle. The big difference is that this
is inserted into the vagina instead of the man’s penis. Its
main aim is to serve as a barrier to bodily fluids that may cause
the transmission of HIV.
In Nigeria, two types of female condoms are available – the
FC1 made from polyurethane plastic and FC2 made of
synthetic latex. The two are soft, thin, odorless and durable, according
to an UNFPA adviser. They have less likelihood of bursting or leaking
and can be used with water- or oil-based lubricants.
Of course, the major advantage of this product is that the females
can have total control of their sexual health and not have to wait
for their partners to initiate using a condom. It can even be inserted
up to a maximum of eight hours before intercourse.
More Awareness Needed
The UNFPA believes it is high time that the use of female
condoms be pushed. This is the reason why it is bent on pursuing
its seminars, community outreach programs and advertising jingles
on the radio to increase awareness of this product. A 2005 survey
conducted by this UN agency found a very low awareness and understanding
of the female condom.
In Nigeria, more female condoms have been distributed since 2003.
From 25,000 in 2003, some 375,000 pieces were distributed in the entire country
by the end of 2006. Of the total number, eight percent were distributed by NGOs.
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