Mission and History
UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, is an international development agency that promotes the right of every woman, man and child to enjoy a life of health and equal opportunity. UNFPA supports countries in using population data for policies and programmes to reduce poverty and to ensure that every pregnancy is wanted, every birth is safe, every young person is free of HIV/AIDS, and every girl and woman is treated with dignity and respect.
UNFPA - because everyone counts.
UNFPA - International Chronology of Events
The year 2009 marked the 15th anniversary of the International Conference on Population and Development in Cairo. This was an opportunity for Myanmar to reflect on progress made, and the efforts still required, to fulfill commitments made in 1994 towards ICPD goals.
2004 was the tenth anniversary and halfway in the countdown to 2015 of the promise that countries from around the globe, including Myanmar, took in 1994 to make reproductive health services available to all by the year 2015. The conference’s ambitious goals are crucial to Myanmar's efforts to meet Millennium Development Goals and improve the lives of people throughout the country.
Five years after the Cairo conference, the United Nations General Assembly convened a special session, known as ICPD+5, to review progress towards meeting the International Conference on Population and Development goals.
In 1997, UNFPA was one of the founding members of the United Nations Development Group (UNDG), created to oversee the Reform Programme of the UN Secretary-General.
The General Assembly endorsed an agreement between UNDP and UNFPA to designate UNFPA resident country directors as UNFPA representatives.
The International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) was held in Cairo in 1994, and UNFPA was designated the lead United Nations organization for the follow-up and implementation of the conference's Programme of Action.
At the ICPD conference, 179 countries produced an inspiring and comprehensive action plan that linked poverty alleviation to women’s empowerment, gender equality and universal access to reproductive health. They agreed to a Programme of Action towards universal education, reduction of infant and child mortality, reduction of maternal mortality and access to reproductive and sexual health services.
The General Assembly transformed the governing bodies of UNICEF and UNDP/UNFPA into executive boards, subject to the authority of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).
The General Assembly approved the change of name of the United Nations Fund for Population Activities to the United Nations Population Fund. The Fund retained its familiar acronym, UNFPA, as well as its aims, purposes and mandate.
UNFPA became a full member of the Administrative Committee on Coordination (ACC) which brings together the executive heads of all UN organizations to coordinate the work of the UN system.
The General Assembly affirmed that UNFPA was a subsidiary organ of the Assembly, enabling UNFPA to participate in all aspects of the Administrative Committee on Coordination (ACC) now called the Chief Executives' Board for Coordination (CEB) and its subsidiary machinery.
The General Assembly placed UNFPA under its authority and designated the UNDP Governing Council as the Fund's governing body, subject to the overall policy guidance of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).
This completed the institutionalization of UNFPA as the lead agency within the United Nations system in the field of population and heralded the beginning of Secretary-General U Thant's "global partnership to defuse the population explosion".
The General Assembly designated UNFPA to play a leading role in the United Nations system in promoting population programmes.
The trust evolved into the United Nations Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA), which became operational in 1969. At this time, United Nations Secretary-General U Thant concluded that the United Nations had perhaps 10 years left "to launch a global partnership... to improve the human environment, to defuse the population explosion, and to supply the required momentum to development efforts".
The late United Nations Secretary-General U Thant established a small Trust Fund for Population to assist developing countries in establishing and expanding their own population programmes.