Young people from the area of Traditional Authority (T/A) Mponda in Mangoci district made an appeal to older community members and their leaders to respect and promote their Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR).
The young people made the appeal through drama, poetry speeches as well as traditional music which vitalised a Youth-led SRHR Open Day that was held at Issa Mponda Village Ground.
In her remarks, one teen mother stood up and stated that she fell pregnant at a tender age because adults did not bother to properly give her sexuality counselling after she reached puberty.
“I was young and naïve but one or two words from parents or older relatives could have saved me from falling into the trap,”, explained one teen-mother from the area.
In his remarks, the Executive Director for YONECO, MacBain Mkandawire bemoaned the tendency of some parents and elders who abdicate their responsibility of upbringing children.
“There is need for parents to open up and tell the young ones what they did or did not do to reach their age. Likewise, children should also be given a voice to speak out on issues which affect them”, said Mkandawire.
The activity was organized by YONECO, with support from Simavi under Get Up Speak (GUSO) Programme which YONECO is implementing under the Malawi SRHR Alliance.
The activity was attended by several traditional leaders from Issa Mponda area, the youth, religious leaders as well as Simavi’s Monitoring and Evaluation personnel from the Netherlands, Sever Dzigursk.