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Quick Read Nguva Yekuverenga: 3 maminitsi

Kudzidzisa Kunoshongedzera Vasikana neVasikana Vechidiki neRuzivo, Unyanzvi, uye Tsigiro yekukunda Matambudziko

We’re sharing pieces that prioritize youth voices and highlight programs that support them and their family planning goals. We hope you enjoy this series and learn from the advocates and participants who share their experiences. Read the first piece, on keeping our promises to youth.

Munyika yose, vasikana nevakadzi vechidiki vanotarisana nematambudziko akasiyana-siyana kuhutano hwavo uye kugara kwavo zvakanaka. Given the complicated factors that contribute to these statistics, we cannot expect simple solutions. Zvisinei, research on the impact of mentoring demonstrates the importance of positive role models and social support systems for improving health knowledge and outcomes. Our colleagues at FHI 360 share how they developed and implemented a multicomponent mentoring program Anyaka Makwiri (Smart Girl).

What is the Context?

Munyika yose, adolescent girls and young women (AGYW) ages 10 ku 24 face a wide array of challenges to their health and well-being. Gore negore, 12 million girls under the age of 18 are married; 61 million school-aged girls do not attend school; and approximately 50% of all sexual assaults are against girls age 15 or younger. In eastern and southern Africa, over 80% of new HIV infections among all adolescents occur among girls ages 15–19. Every year, nezve 16 million AGYW between the ages of 15 uye 19 give birth.

Given the complicated factors that contribute to these statistics, we cannot expect simple solutions. Zvisinei, research on the impact of mentoring demonstrates the importance of positive role models and social support systems for improving health knowledge and outcomes. Mukupindura, under the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)-funded YouthPower Action project, FHI 360 developed and implemented a multicomponent mentoring program for AGYW called Anyaka Makuri (Smart Girl).

Participants in an Anyaka Makwiri mentoring session. Photo: FHI 360.
Vakapinda muchirongwa cheAnyaka Makwiri. Mufananidzo: FHI 360.

About Anyaka Makwiri

Anyaka Makwiri includes group-based mentoring, with a curriculum covering sexual and reproductive health, financial capabilities, hunyanzvi hunyanzvi, and gender; activities designed to improve participants’ social connectedness; optional onsite testing for sexually transmitted infections (STIs), HIV, and pregnancy along with STI treatment and links to HIV care and treatment; group-based savings; and links to contraceptive and gender-based violence services.

The entire mentoring toolkit consists of four parts:

  1. Trainer Handbook, for training mentors
  2. Mentor Handbook, pamwe 26 group information sessions to be led by trained adult female mentors
  3. Participant Handbook, including worksheets and handouts for mentees
  4. Program Management Handbook, a collection of resources to help managers implement the mentoring program

The program was initially implemented in Gulu District, Northern Uganda, among 500 AGYW ages 15 ku 26. Each mentoring group included 30 participants and four mentors, who were also young women also from the community. Between May and November 2017, in addition to weekly mentoring meetings, the Anyaka Makwiri program offered over 1,000 STI, HIV, and pregnancy tests, and approximately 200 screenings for cervical cancer and human papillomavirus.

Youth Power Action Mentoring Model
Youth Power Action Mentoring Model

What Was the Impact?

In this short video, several participants describe the profound impact the program has had on their lives, and their stories are supported by research. A study conducted in tandem with the implementation of Anyaka Makwiri found improvements in participants’ communication about HIV testing and counseling, their HIV knowledge―specifically, common misconceptions about HIV, methods of reducing sexual transmission, and mother-to-child transmission—and their savings behaviors. Saizvozvo, through the program’s savings group component, participants saved a total of 9.2 million Ugandan shillings (around 2,500 USD). Some participants organized their own income-generating activities such as farming, rearing livestock, and selling food and drinks.

What Came Next?

With funding from USAID’s Advancing Partners & Communities project, Anyaka Makwiri has been scaled up to three more districts in Uganda. The program’s success led FHI 360 to adapt and implement it in Burundi, Naijeriya, and Ethiopia, where another 40,000 girls and young women have participated. Pamusoro pe, FHI 360 also adapted it to create Young Wratha, a mentoring program for boys and young men in Uganda.

Looking Ahead

The Youth Power Action Mentoring model presents family planning/reproductive health programmers with a tested approach for addressing the sexual and reproductive health (SRH) needs of AGYW. This model addresses social values and norms, builds financial skills, and links them to services for SRH and gender-based violence response. Most importantly, the approach leaves AGYW empowered to lead and sustain their own economic and health initiatives and improved outcomes.

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Vakapinda muchirongwa cheAnyaka Makwiri. Mufananidzo: FHI 360.
Suzanne Fischer

Suzanne Fischer, MS, akabatana neFHI 360 mu 2002 uye iye zvino ari Associate Director weRuzivo Management muResearch Utilization division, kwaanotarisira chikwata chevanyori, vapepeti, uye graphic designers. Pamusoro pe, anofungidzira, anonyora, anodzokorora, uye anogadzirisa curricula, mupi zvishandiso, inoshuma, pfupiso, uye social media content. Anodzidzisawo vaongorori vepasirese nezvekunyora zvinyorwa zvesainzi zvejenari uye akabatsira-kufambisa maworkshops ekunyora munyika sere.. Nzvimbo dzake dzehunyanzvi dzekufarira dzinosanganisira hutano hwepabonde uye kubereka uye zvirongwa zveHIV kune vanhu vakakosha. Ndiye munyori pamwe chete wePositive Connections: Vanotungamira Ruzivo uye Mapoka Ekutsigira Vechidiki Vanorarama neHIV.

Kate Plourde

Kate Plourde, MPH, iTechnical Advisor mukati meGlobal Health Population and Research department kuFHI 360. Nzvimbo dzake dzehunyanzvi dzinosanganisira kusimudzira hutano uye kugara zvakanaka kwevasikana vachiri kuyaruka nevakadzi vadiki; tichitaura nezvetsika dzevanhu, kusanganisira tsika dzechikadzi dzisina kunaka; uye kushandisa tekinoroji itsva, kusanganisira nharembozha nesocial media, zvedzidzo yehutano nekusimudzira. Iye mumiriri weDrPH paUniversity yeIllinois kuChicago Chikoro chePublic Health uye akawana Master of Public Health neGlobal Health concentration kubva kuBoston University..

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