In partnership with Bayer, German-based multinational pharmaceuticals, the World Contraception Day (WCD) was commemorated on October 22nd 2018 at DSW Youth Development Training Center in Debrezeit (Bishoftu), Ethiopia. This year’s key message was “Your Life, Your Future.”

A half-day occasion, which saw the attendance of about seventy enthusiastic in-and-out of school youth, was being spent on a panel discussion. Nearly 40 of all participants were girls among them some were members of the Nisir SRH Youth Club who took part in a short drama about unintended teen pregnancy.

Following a brief introduction note by Abebe Demisu, DSW’s Program & Project Department Manager, official from the Mayor’s office in Bishoftu town, Mr. Gezahegn Getachew hailed DSW for its continued effort to promote about the needs for awareness and access to youth-friendly services, including contraception all in the context of youth empowerment programs.

Focus on youth needs

In his opening speech, Abebe further asserted that DSW always initiates a youth empowerment program to integrate into its various interventions. “Although WCD has a specific scope of agenda to commemorate this day, addressing the subject of contraception in many ways affects the effort of empowering young people.” It goes without saying, Abebe noted, that “our vision has it all as it focuses on the needs and potential of the largest youth generation in history through a commitment toward creating demand for and access to health information, services and supplies, including contraception.”

On his part, Mr. Solomon Mekonnen representing Bayer appreciated the growing partnership built with DSW. He further emphasized on exploring possibilities in the future of having more such occasions without necessarily waiting for similar annual events of WCD to arrive. We see the importance and commitment among the stakeholders and particularly the youth who should own the effort to make a difference.

Access and information

On behalf of the federal ministry of health, Mrs. Aster Teshome prepared a power-point presentation. She encouraged the majority of those whose age ranging from 12 to 17 attending the event to stay informed about issues affect them most. Aster has concluded her presentation by asserting a key message: “If we want the youth of today to become fully empowered, it is important that we should also help them be able to get access to information and services of their sexual and reproductive health needs.”

World Contraception Day is normally honored worldwide on September 26 ever since it was launched in 2007. Following which this global event takes place, in many parts of the world the commemoration of WCD cascades at later time. DSW in collaboration with Bayer, for the third time in a row, this year’s WCD has been honored in a panel discussion at DSW Youth Development Training Center.

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