79 Young People from the area of Traditional Authority (T/A) Mponda in Mangochi district visited YONECO Head Office in Zomba on a learning and sharing visit.
The young people, who are members of nine youth clubs which are under Mponda Youth Network, collaboratively work with YONECO in various youth develop activities within their areas. Among other things, the group comprised of Peer Educators, Theatre for Development (TfD) artists, Radio Listening Club (RLC) members as well as Youth Community Based Distribution Agents (YCBDAs).
In his welcome remarks, the Executive Director for YONECO, MacBain Mkandawire urged the young people to have diverse activities in their youth clubs. Mkandawire further stated that young people need to have good health for them to effectively participate in various economic activities hence the importance of looking at all issues that come into play.
The Executive Director also talked about other problems which are mostly affecting young people in the country. Among other things, Mkandawire described migration, child marriages and increased incidences of school dropout and Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) among the youth as detrimental to the development of Malawi.
In his remarks, Mponda Youth Network Chairperson, Selemani Friday thanked YONECO for the opportunity to tour YONECO ICT Centre, Tithandizane Helpline Call Centre and YFM Studios where they held interviews and recorded some youth development radio programmes.
The young people who toured YONECO came from nine youth clubs namely; Chaona, Namakango, Issa Mponda, Chisomo, Mtawa, Kamwana, Ipira, Mayankho, Chanasa. YONECO, through the Get Up Speak Out (GUSO) Programme is working with the young volunteers to promote Meaningful Youth Participation (MYP), increase access to Sexual Reproductive Health (SRH) Services among other things. Young people from various clubs are also encouraged to collaborate among themselves in order to promote their rights. YONECO is implementing the GUSO Programme with support from Simavi and the programme is expected to phase-out in 2020.