Participants at the FP2020 Youth Meeting in Abuja have solicited for peer group reproductive care giver and the establishment of youth friendly facilities to scale up access to sexual and reproductive health services, as health service providers negative attitudes hinder access to the services in the country.
The meeting which convened by United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), draws young people from all geopolitical zones in Nigeria to actively engage, share experiences and best practices on actionable ways to ensure other young people in their communities have access to quality, affordable sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services,
It had in attendance FP2020 Reference Group youth representative, youth SRH advocates, programs leads, communication experts, Women Deliver young leaders, current and previous winners of the 120 under 40 Family Planning award and members of the International Youth Alliance on Family Planning.
At a panel discussion the group said such pier group must be trained and retrained to offer sexual and reproductive health services thereby encouraging youths to go to the facilities to obtain comprehensive reproductive health services.
Speaking at the meeting Youth Programme Advisor, National Urban and Reproductive Health Initiative (NURHI), Ms Margaret Bolaji,said there was need for government to establish youth friendly centres and employ youths to work in the facilities in the thirty-six states and FCT.
Ms Bolaji said the purpose of the meet was to share experiences and find innovative solutions to Youth Family Planning needs in various states.
“The youths are pushing for a Comprehensive Sexuality Education programmes in the country; especially the adolescent and youth component of the programme.”
On her part, the Executive Director, Brave Heart Initiative, an NGO ,Ms Priscilla Usiobaifo, called for more innovative and reproductive health services that targets men in the society.
“It is only condoms that are being use by both sex, but pills, implants, injectible contraceptives targets women, we suggest a different family planning method that targeted at men to bridge the gender divide,’’ she said.
Ms Usiobaifo also called for regular training of health workers to enhance uptake of contraceptives and other reproductive health services in the country..
“Sometimes the young people while accessing the services at some PHC experiences stigma and discrimination from the health workers, because the health workers have an assumption that only married couples can access such services,’’ she added.
Family Planning 2020 (FP2020) is a global partnership that supports the rights of women and girls to decide, freely, and for themselves, whether, when, and how many children they want to have. FP2020 works with governments, civil society, multi-lateral organizations, donors, the private sector, and the research and development community to enable 120 million more women and girls to use contraceptives by 2020.
FP2020 is an outcome of the 2012 London Summit on Family Planning where more than 20 governments made commitments to address the policy, financing, delivery and socio-cultural barriers to women accessing contraceptive information, services and supplies. Donors also pledged an additional US$2.6 billion in funding.
FP2020 is based on the principle that all women, no matter where they live should have access to lifesaving contraceptives. FP2020 is in support of the UN Secretary-General’s global effort for women and children’s health, Every Woman Every Child.