We have been working in close partnership with the Training and Research Support Centre (TARSC) to enhance youth participation in health through building youth skills, capacities, analysis and knowledge of health and reproductive health issues. In 2004, TARSC provided technical support in developing a special section at CWGH focusing on youth.
Our Youth Programme is now a central part of our structures with youth representatives sitting on national and district committees and decision-making bodies. The programme equips youths with information and skills on Sexual Reproductive health issues and rights. Youths are empowered to advocate and lobby for their sexual and reproductive health rights. It strengthens young people’s participation in decisions and actions related to reproductive health. The programme enhances civic society responses to youth reproductive health needs through increasing the young people’s capacity to articulate and organize themselves around those needs.
Once the youths are trained they come up with locally initiated activities which use participatory methodologies to disseminate information to peers and the community. The youth programme mainly targets in and out of school youths and operates in ten CWGH districts- Bulawayo, Hwange, Filabusi, Esigodini, Victoria falls, Tsholotsho, Chikwaka, Acturus, Plumtree and Mutare. Recent activities Over the years, the CWGH has exhibited at the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair under different themes. This year’s exhibition, the sixth in collaboration with the National AIDS Council and the AID Service Organisations, ran under the theme “Unlocking our investment potential: Universal Access and Human rights. Together we can make it”. This was consistent with the World AIDS Day and ZITF themes.
The objectives of the CWGH exhibition were:
- To disseminate information on Sexual Reproductive Health (SRH), HIV and AIDS to young people and communities in general
- To identify gaps and opportunities for SRH programming
- To network and build alliances with relevant partners and stakeholders to enhance planning, implementation, coordination, monitoring and evaluation of programs addressing youth SRH needs.
- To facilitate the exchange of information and knowledge amongst young people, youth serving organizations and other relevant partners in the national response to HIV and AIDS for young people.
Exhibitions such as the ZITF provide opportunities to reach out to the target population with basic information on HIV and AIDS in order to promote safer sexual behaviors and to reduce stigma. IEC material in the form of pamphlets, posters, T-Shirts, pens and rulers were also distributed. We would like to extend our sincere gratitude to our partnersMost of the IEC material was sourced from partners SHILOAH Zimbabwe, SAYWHAT, IOM, Plumtree AIDS Project and SAT for the IEC materials used during the exhibition.