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This year, somewhere in the world, we will reach our 100 millionth client. Every one of our 100 million clients has a different story. Women like Agathe Dao from Mali.
Agathe lives in the remote village of Vanekuy – a place where villagers have to walk for hours to receive any kind of healthcare. Agathe is 40 years old and like many women in her community, she has had many children – so many in fact that she struggles to keep count.
One day Agathe overheard a social marketing agent talking about contraception in the local market and immediately she knew that this is what she needed. She headed straight to the compound where Marie Stopes Mali was providing services.
Sitting in front of a health worker, Agathe was asked how many children she had. She said: “I have no idea, but help me count”. Going through the names of her children one by one, she counted 16 in total, 12 of which were surviving.
In the end Agathe chose to have an implant that would protect her from pregnancy for the next five years. She sighed with relief:
“My body is so tired. I am so happy I can rest now. Without Marie Stopes, I would still suffer.”
Agathe is just one of 100 million clients who we at Marie Stopes International have helped over the last 40 years, something our CEO Simon Cooke describes as “a truly outstanding milestone for our organisation.”
On Wednesday 24th June, we are holding a day of celebration in recognition of serving our 100 millionth client. Across 37 country programmes, team members are marking 100 Million Day with a number of special events and client promotions.
In Vietnam, they are handing out free women’s health packs to every client that walks through their doors. In Mexico, they plan to distribute contraceptive injections to 20,000 women and girls, free of charge. From TV commercials to reproductive health roadshows, every country will be doing something special to mark the day.
Events will be documented in an online gallery at 100MillionDay.org, along with the short film below, which reflects on how far the partnership has come in the last 40 years and how it is already looking ahead to the next 100 million.
Simon Cooke explains:
“At Marie Stopes International, we believe that every family should be able to decide whether and when to have children, and we are committed to bringing that choice to many millions more women and men around the world.”
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