Liberia: MOE, Hanze University Begin Two-Day Stakeholders' Meeting

... For TVET Curriculum on SRHR

On Thursday, November 7, 2019, education stakeholders began a two-day meeting in Monrovia with an aim to solicit and build consensus on the design of a module on Sexual Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the development of Technical Vocational and Education Training (TVET) curriculum.

The two-day event is being organized by authorities at the Ministry of Education (MoE) in partnership with the Hanze University of Applied Sciences (HUAS) Groningen based in the Netherlands. It was founded by Nuffic incorporating preventives health, personal Hygiene and SRHR in TVET curricula.

Nuffic is the Dutch organization for internationalization in education. It is an independent, non-profit organization based in The Hague, the Netherlands. Its most important contract partners are the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science and the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The program brought together more than 15 participants from TVET institutions in Montserrado, Margibi and Lofa counties.

Assistant Minister of Education Dominic Kweme recalled that HUAS and Life Span Liberia, a local non-governmental organization into health and its related matters, launched the Orange Knowledge Program earlier this year; therefore, yesterday's gathering, he said, was in fulfillment of what was done a few months back.

Minister Kweme said the meeting was significant in support of government's initiative to strengthen and promote preventive health and SRHR in all TVET institutions.

"This is part of the MoE's efforts to develop a humanized national curriculum for TVET institutions, which is being implemented by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) with support from the European Union (EU).

He encouraged participants to take advantage of the event so that at the end of the day, TVET institutions in the country can have adequate knowledge of SRHR.

Judith R. Pellicaan, University lecturer Internationalization, said the SRHR program is a pilot project intended to promote TVET institutions in terms of developing its curriculum in the country. It is also essential because it looks at issues regarding SRHR, something which, she said, will help Liberia to share experiences and knowledge that will open up discussions surrounding the SRHR.

Madam Pellicaan said the project is a two-year program which targets Lofa, Montserrado and Margibi counties.

"We are finalizing this from now to next year February, because we expect to write different modules relating to the various topics on the SRHR, and then, we will go on developing them as we will be piloting the project, getting feedback, as well as making some adjustments before spreading the ideas across the country.

"What we hope for is that SRHR issues will be improved in all TVET institutions, and to have a responsible life so that we all will have a responsible sexual behavior, because it is affecting the society in general," she said.

"We want to support teachers as well to ensure that everyone lives in a safe environment, and this can be done by creating the necessary awareness on the importance of these kinds of issues," Madam Pellicaan said.

Jemimah W. Browne, Adolescent Health Coordinator, Family Health Division at MoH, said that the stakeholders' meeting was timely, and that she expects MoE and MoH would develop a new national curriculum for TVET, to ensure that teenage pregnancy, maternal mortality, rape, drugs, substance abuse, and illiteracy rate are reduced among the young people.

Mamakiziel Siah Sicarr, a participant, said the meeting will create more awareness and an enabling environment for young people to speak out about the SRHR at TVET levels.

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