Netherlands ambassador engages the youth Nsawam

The Netherlands Ambassador to Ghana, His Excellency Ambassador Ron Strikker, and a high powered delegation from the Netherlands Embassy, Accra paid a working visit the team at Youth Advocates Ghana,Nsawam. The visit was initiated when Dr. Ger J. Steenbergen ,First Secretary Health, Netherlands Embassy visited the organization a month earlier as part of their funding/Partners support and follow up visit at the office of Youth Advocates Ghana (YAG). Youth Advocates Ghana in view of the ambassador`s visit organized “Together With Youth-Event” ,a youth engagement forum for Senior high school students, youth leaders and project beneficiaries to interact, exchange ideas and to showcase the three projects; Adolescent Health Corner-AHC, My Jorley and Film project being implemented by Youth Advocates Ghana and with financial support from the Dutch Embassy and also to establish a wide-based community movement which will encourage the positive involvement of young people in addressing issues that affect their education, social life and sexual reproductive health. It was also aimed at empowering the youth to effectively use the social media to enhance learning and research. The AHC project as implemented in four senior high schools in Nsawam seeks to build the capacity of guidance and counseling teachers and units to effectively address sexual and reproductive health needs among students through counseling and referral services. The My Jorley is an interactive game app developed to influence attitude and inform decisions around abortion, sexual consent and address teenage pregnancy among young people. The film project on the other hand empowers young people with skills in short film production to tackle social issues and to bring to light the challenges of young people in accessing reproductive health services. During the youth consultation and engagement session, employment challenges, Sexual health and reproductive rights issues including teenage pregnancy and unsafe abortion; drug abuse, armed robbery, streetism, entrepreneurship and scholarship opportunities were identified and discussed as the main challenge facing the youth in the area. The Netherlands Ambassasor to Ghana, Ron Strikker, commended the Youth Advocates Ghana for their leadership and initiatives. He also urged the youth to stay focus on their studies and also involve themselves in productive activities that will help in developing their skills and potentials.He added that “This is fully in line with our own approach in the Netherlands. The Dutch have a specific youth friendly policy that specifically invites young people to be fully engaged in the work of the government”. He stressed the need for frequent youth empowerment programmes from other organizations to support the youth in the area. The Director for Youth Advocates Ghana, Emmanuel Ametepey said the outcome of the youth consultative engagement will inform their strategic decision and direction in the next three-five years. The mission of YAG is to increase access to sexual reproductive health information and services for young people, support the educational needs of vulnerable children and to equip young people with knowledge and skills for job creation.

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