On January 5-6, 2021 we partnered with Children’s Chance International (Uganda) to host a COVID-compliant workshop for youth focused on reproductive health and menstrual hygiene. 21 adolescents participated, including 19 girls and 2 boys, 13-20 years old, from the Lira District sub-counties of Aromo and Agweng, which continue to recover from the effects of the 22 year conflict between Lords Resistant Army rebels (LRA) led by Joseph Kony and the Uganda people defense forces.
Youth were selected based on their competence, availability, age, experience, willingness to volunteer, ability to speak and understand English, and willingness by their parent to consent and release them for training.
All youth received a workbook covering the workshop topics, including changes the body undergoes during puberty, basics of reproduction, prevention of HIV and other sexually transmitted disease, and menstruation management. The youth were trained in how to make reusable sanitary pads and given supplies to train an addition 10-20 youth in their community.
Following the workshop, the youth enthusiastically returned to their communities and reached out to far more of their peers than anticipated with the training they received. The success of the program inspired Ray United and CCI to build on the momentum and launch the Youth Public Health Ambassadors Program.
The Workshop would not have been possible without the funding and technical support provided by Katya Besch through her Girl Scout Gold Award.