More health for youth

Youth for Health (Y4H) is a three-year initiative that will work to expand access to life-changing adolescent sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights (ASRHR), with a focus on reaching the poorest and most marginalised adolescent girls, including those with disabilities, in rural and hard-to-reach areas of Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, and Zambia. By unlocking demand and access and contributing towards changes in favour of supportive policies and funding environments, Youth for Health will increase and sustain access to ASRHR for girls and young women.

DSW in a consortium led by MSI Reproductive Choices, along with six other national partners,  Centre for the Study of Adolescence (CSA) Kenya, Health Alert Sierra Leone (HASiL), Youth Advocates Ghana (YAG), Sikika, Restless Development Zambia and Youth Network for Sustainable Development (YNSD) Ethiopia are implementing the Y4H project. Each partner brings a wealth of experience working with, and for, adolescents, including in youth-friendly services; youth-led accountability and participation in governance; youth leadership, especially of young women; youth mobilisation; and community engagement; as well as long-standing media and communication experience.

DSW’s role in the project is to improve the political environment and mobilise resources in the countries at local, national and regional levels, while working on the ground in two subdistricts in Ethiopia, Kenya and Tanzania. Other project partners are focused on increasing demand for high-quality SRHR information and ensuring a strong public health sector is able to deliver ASRHR services. In these six subdistricts, DSW-trained youth champions are working to ensure that their demands for improved national ASRHR services are heard. The production and analysis of annual budget studies and community scorecards will be important tools the youth champions will use in their advocacy to call for increased funding for ASRHR in their communities.

Miriam Riechers

Key activities

Annual analysis of public budgets in Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania and Zambia in terms of planning and spending on ASRHR and family planning.

Collection of data on the availability of youth-friendly ASRHR services and modern contraceptives in the communities.

Providing expertise on ASRHR through participation in working groups and consultations at the local, regional and national levels.

Training of 30 youth champions per country on family planning, ASRHR and gender-based violence.

Online and in-person interaction with local community members on ASRHR and gender-based violence issues through campaigns each year.

Engage with the African Union (AU) and East African Community (EAC) by participating at civil society organisation consultation meetings and disseminating ASRHR advocacy priorities

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Efficient, as administrative costs are low

Plannable support for young people