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Ensuring youth-friendly reproductive health services in 3 districts in post disaster Central Sulawesi

PALU, Central Sulawesi, 20 May 2019: A joint effort is being initiated to equip 8 community health centers (puskesmas) and 15 reproductive health posts in the Palu, Sigi and Donggala (known as Pasigala) districts with the capacity to provide youth friendly reproductive health services and referral care.

“Through these health facilities, youth can access youth friendly reproductive health services and information provided by trained healthworkers,” said Nur Arifina Vivinia UNFPA Youth in Emergencies Officer.

 “This is part of the transition to recovery phase to ensure continued programmes to promote youth rights and wellbeing in the post emergency and in longer term provincial development,” she added.

The plan, jointly conducted by the Ministry and Provincial Health Offices and UNFPA, will include linking these health facilities with the 8 Youth Friendly Spaces (YSF) and organizing a series of trainings for health workers at these health facilities and capacity building for the 16 peer educators at YFS.

Each of these health facilities will have the capacity to provide among others Adolescent Reproductive Health services, education and youth counseling, conducted in the facility and through outreach activities to neighboring schools to raise youth awareness on health & reproductive health, rights and to promote service utilization.

Part of the reasons for low health service utilization among youth include poor health awareness; and stigma and discrimination from community members and possibly from the health service providers, often attached to youth who are seen accessing health services.

“This is a common youth rights issue in the communities that we aim to address through this programme; We also plan to identify and engage youth and health partners at the community level to promote youth rights & health: awareness and wellbeing in their respective communities,” Vivinia explained.
The 8 UNFPA & DFAT-supported YFS were established in Oct 2018 to provide safe spaces for youth to seek information and services, to join skills trainings and to channel their ideas for youth friendly IDPs camp management, emergencies & RehabRecon planning. 
Until end of March 2019, UNFPA and provincial youth NGO PKBI/IPPA have trained at least 24 peer educators and 100 youth volunteers to run the 8 YFS and conducted various awareness and skills training, benefitting around 8,600 disaster-affected youth and facilitated 10 youth to access services at the closest ReproHealth Clinics/Tents.