The Somaliland Youth Peer Education Network (Y-Peer) is expanding its presence to be able to reach more young people with peer-to-peer education to promote healthy life styles, youth participation, civic engagement and leadership in the field of adolescent sexual and reproductive health (SRH) and HIV prevention.
With financial support from the People of Japan, Somaliland Y-Peer held a training on adolescent sexual and reproductive health (SRH), gender based violence (GBV) and youth volunteerism from 25 May to 27 May, 2017 for 15 Y-Peer focal points from the six regions of Somaliland. The regional representatives were from schools and universities in which youth clubs were established by the Y-Peer network under the support of UNFPA Somalia.
The main objective of the training was to equip the regional representatives with the right knowledge and skills to reach a large number of students and educate those peers in schools and universities on SRH and GBV issues pertinent to young people in Somaliland.
The participants were trained on the basics of SRH and GBV and how these are related to the well being of the youth.
One of the participants Ms. Samiira Mohamed Ahmed, said the main highlight of the training was that the social and health risks faced by young people are enormous but can be tackled with the right attitude and knowledge sharing.
“We have the commitment and willingness to extend what we learnt during the training to our peer groups in schools and universities of our respective locations,” said Ms. Ahmed.
Another participant, Mr. Khalid Mohamed Osman said generally, young people, both female and male, are isolated and may not easily access health or psychosocial support and services at any point. He said there is a great need to inform young people about GBV in schools and universities because the big proportion of GBV survivors are young girls, who may not be able to obtain necessary services openly and freely in public health service delivery points.
“The knowledge acquired from this training will strengthen our skills as advocates of SRH and prevention of GBV among youth and will add value to the work of youth peer clubs in their schools and universities,” said Mr. Osman.
The Y-PEER youth peer education network of organizations and institutions was pioneered by UNFPA in 2002 and is working in the field of sexual and reproductive health in 52 countries throughout the world. The main activities of Y-Peer are capacity building, trainings, knowledge management, policy/advocacy, and networking, working the most at risk young people, services and edutainment.
—Ahmed Abdi Jama