Neno — Family Planning Association of Malawi (FPAM) has embarked on an exercise to revive youth clubs and reach out to them with sexual reproductive health messages in a bid to reduce teen pregnancies in the district.
Neno District Manager for FPAM, Harvey Gama said the organisation noted gaps in sexual reproductive health (SRH) messages among the youth, which is leaving a lot of them with early and unwanted pregnancies, especially during this time when schools remain closed.
"A lot of youth in Neno are not aware of family planning methods and how to access them to avoid getting pregnant.
"Hence, through the Youth arm Action Movement (YAM) they should be able to disseminate SRH messages among themselves," Gama said.
"The YAM Initiative has been inactive for close to two years, affecting SRH care among the youth.
"However, now with the revival, the youth will be able to access information through youth friendly health activities," he added.
Gama, therefore, appealed to the youth who are HIV positive to come to the clinic to access anti-retroviral therapy (ART) services for free through youth friendly health services.
Neno District Youth Officer, Hope Mwafulirwa commended FPAM for the re-introduction of the youth program, saying it would help the youth to have the right information on SRH services.
"Most youth, especially those in primary and some in secondary schools, have had difficulties in accessing information with most just getting family planning myths as there was no-one to dispel such kind of information," Mwafulirwa said.
"The emergence of Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has also become a great challenge as there was need to intensify SRH services because most teens, who are sexually active, are out of school.
"This raises the fear of them indulging in premarital sexual activities," he added.