In Indonesia, while public opinion and the law take a consistently rigid stance against abortion, Islam offers a much more pragmatic approach.
As it stands, tens of thousands in the Philippines are stuck in difficult or dysfunctional marriages, torn between the teachings of their faith and a humiliating legal limbo.
"We are losing a lot of our women, who could support our economy, who are our mothers and sisters, you know, for no reason."
In Kenya, improving sexual health education and providing girls and women with control over their own fertility are crucial in preventing maternal deaths.
The sight of young mothers in Busia is not uncommon. Poverty and rape account for the high number of unintended pregnancies in the region.
Kenya continues to lose 7,000 mothers to preventable deaths each year. If the solutions are known, why has there been so little progress in saving their lives?
Most women in Niger marry at the onset of puberty and are expected to continue having as many children as their bodies will allow until they reach menopause.
Victims of domestic violence, mental and physical abuse, and child marriage have a sanctuary in the only shelter of its kind in Niger, a country of 17 million.
The challenges of population growth, environmental degradation, food security, and even violent extremism can be traced back to issues with girls’ health, education and human rights.
The teacher at the Koranic school described the young woman as “calm and obedient,” ideal marriage material. Samira Abdoulaye, 19, did not return the sentiment.
The rate of population growth exceeds economic growth in Niger where women have an average of seven children. Government officials hope family planning will become the best way forward.
From the U.S. to India, alarm has long been raised about overpopulation, leading to calls for harsh measures to curb it. But is population control the answer?
"We will illuminate dark places and, with a deep sense of responsibility, interpret these troubled times."
JOSEPH PULITZER III (1913-1993)