Mangochi, September 9, Mana: Family Planning Association of Malawi (FPAM) has embarked on Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRH) outreach program in Mangochi, Dedza, Salima and Kasungu under the United Nations (UN) Joint Program on Girls’ Education III.
Project Coordinator for FPAM, Jimmy Kachale said in Mangochi recently during a media tour at Katema in Traditional Authority (TA) Mponda that the program aims at making SRH services and right information on the same access to in and out of schoolboys and girls and the community at large
He said as implementing partner of UNFPA (one of the UN agencies implanting JPGE III) FPAM understands that many Malawians have difficulties in accessing SRH services and right information on the same.
“This has been seen as the country continues registering more unwanted teenage pregnancies, leaving most of young girls with no option but to get married at a tender age,” explained Kachale.
He continued: “To address this problem the project is targeting schools and other catchment areas focusing on adolescent boys and girls both in and out of school as well as the community at large”.
Kachale said FPAM was also focusing on provision of comprehensive sexuality education and school health programming to ensure that young people have access to information through dedicated mobile teams that go and provide outreach services on SRH, HIV and AIDS, and modern family planning methods.
He added that the organisation relies on Youth Community-Based Distribution Agents (YCBDAs) saying they provide total information and services reaching many young people in different catchment areas through mobile outreach clinics and door-to-door services.
Katema YCBDA, Major Ndaimani, concurred with Kachale, saying the information on SRH has helped various families to focus on developmental projects in their households as women are now adopting family planning methods and they are spacing childbirth.
“Both parents and children were lacking knowledge on use of modern contraceptives and through our work, with support from partners, we have brought great improvement in the uptake of services by the communities and many people are now getting contraceptives,” explained Ndaimani.
Group Village Headman Kalino of the area commended FPAM for bringing the project to the area saying it will help reduce early pregnancies among young girls.
The UNJPGE III is a collaborative effort by government of Malawi with technical support from three United Nations agencies of WFP, UNICEF and UNFPA.
The project was launched in 2014 with support from Royal Norwegian Embassy to promote girls’ education by, among other things, addressing multiple issues on culture, health, nutrition, and gender.