THE RABUOR YOUTH HEALTH DAY
The Nyando sub-county health department in collaboration with the Rabuor sub- county hospital organized a day long health day for the youth in the hospitals catchment area youth. The hospital has a catchment population of more than 32,000 people. Of these, more than 21% are the youth aged between 15 and 24 years.
Addressing more than 300 young people, gathered at the Rabuor Sub-county hospital on Saturday, the 5th June 2018, the sub-county public health nurse, Mrs. Onyango, said that lack of awareness and risky sexual behavior among the youth were the leading causes of morbidity among the young population. “Our youth do not have access to adequate education on contraception, and sexually transmitted infections.” She further expressed her disappointment in the high rates of teenage pregnancies in the area. she remarked that 1 in at least 5 of the youth teenage girls have had a teenage pregnancy.
Speaking at the event, the host, the Nursing officer in charge of Rabuor sub-county hospital, Mr. Njoje George, expressed his gratitude to the sponsors of the event: FACES, Afya Halisi, The Nyando sub-county health department the Rabuor sub-county hospital and APMWSR in collaboration with IPPNW.
Earlier this year FACES had established a youth center at the hospital. The center provides a place where the youth not only meet and interact, but also get a chance to interact with health care providers and peer counselors. Mr. Njoje, speaking to theDoctor, however, expressed his disappointment that the facility had cost a lot of money to establish but hadn’t been put to maximum use yet.
theDoctor spoke to some of the youths attending the event and they expressed their joy for being a part of the program. The however pointed to lack of awareness as the reason they were not actively using the youth center. “We will now be coming here anytime we are free now that we have been registered into the program,” Said one of the boys as he watched his peers play a game of pool.
The center is fully equipped to cater for both the social and medical needs of the youth in the region; there is a free pool table, a library and a social hall. Speaking to theDoctor, the leadership of FACES, one of the key event sponsors, said that the only problem they were facing currently was inadequate staff members. He asked for the help of the team of young doctors from Maseno University in providing the much needed human resource and guidance to the youth.
A team of about 20 young doctors attended the event and were very instrumental in providing a listening ear to the youth and also assisted in medical consultation, cervical cancer screening, HIV testing and family planning implant insertion and removal. They conducted counselling sessions for the youth in small groups where they addressed key issues affecting the youth: drug abuse, sexual and reproductive health, family planning, HIV/AIDS, breast and cervical cancer talks and menstrual hygiene. They also shared some pf their success stories and motivated the youth on various life issues.
The young doctors from Maseno, led by Jemima Nyaboke, were attending on behalf of IPPNW. Addressing the attending youth, Jemima expressed her gratitude to the sponsors of the event and encouraged the youth to be active in using the youth center. She encouraged them to listen to the peer counselors and open up, and to take the various medical services being offered.
The event was largely a success despite being the first time it was being done. The host, Mr. George, expressed his dissatisfaction with the organization but promised to do a better job next time.