Include adolescents in the fight to reduce HIV/AIDS-Youth Achievers
By ALICE NACHILEMBE
Youth Achievers project Manager Peter Musonda says adolescents should be included in the fight to reduce HIV/ADIS infections by 2030.
Mr Musonda said the organisation has embarked on a training program to train Peer Educators those in schools and out of schools on issues to do with adolescent and sexual reproductive health because this is the information that there are lacking.
He said parents view it as a taboo to talk about sexual reproductive health and HIV/AIDS to their children but it is important for them to know and have information on the same.
Mr Musonda was speaking at a peer educators training on strengthening community and stokeholds engagement in HIV/ ADIS and sexual reproductive health which is being sponsored by PEPFAR to run for five days.
He said Youth Achievers intend to reach out to 10,000 adolescents in Chililabombwe with SRH information by the end of the program which is running for one year.
Mr Musonda said that most of the time adult make policies for young people without consulting them hence training the young people who can reach out to them.
He said Chililabombwe is a transit town which receives truck drivers on a daily basis and take pressure in adolescents especially school drop outs.
Mr Musonda said every year the district records a number of school dropouts who ends up on streets and others just give out their bodies to truck drivers and boys become drug abusers.
He said the organisation want to create a platform for adolescent to discuss and know about their sexual reproductive Health.
“This training is one of the program in the strengthening community and stakeholder’s engagement where we can create a platform for the young people who have also not been spared by HIV/AIDS. The idea is to train young people who can reach out to fellow young people with the same level of understanding,” he said.
Mr Musonda said that the training also carters for the guidance teachers in schools who will be guiding the pupils as they go out to their fellow pupils to give out information.
He said the project will also cater for parents and civic leaders to get information about adolescents as charity should begin from home.
And Chililabombwe District Adolescent Focal Person Josphat Chembo said adolescents are facing a number of problems including HIV/AIDS and teen pregnancies.
Mr Chembo said most of the problems ares due to luck of recreation.
He said the district is trying to find ways in which to mitigate their challenges by reaching out to them with information.
He said some adolescents are engaged into illicit activities because of luck of information.
Mr Chembo said the District health office is working with the Ministry of education to mitigate teen pregnancies in schools.
Njavwa Nalwimba one of the participants said that parents feel shy talking to their children on topics that boarders on sex unless when a child gets pregnant.