This year, AMOS launched its Sexual and Reproductive Health Pilot Program in Matagalpa. One of our main goals is to work with community leaders to reduce teen pregnancy, diseases, and maternal deaths through educational fairs.
This Pilot Program came as a response to a need identified by local leaders in the 6 communities we serve in Matagalpa, who asked for help and support to reduce teenage pregnancy, a health problem they had been facing for many years. Among their concerns related to this, they have expressed that the establishment of couples at a young age remains a complex issue in their communities. However, there is an urgent need to provide support to help reduce teen pregnancies.
The pilot is taking place in Matagalpa because about half the population we serve is located in this region, reaching 7,143 people.
So far, 52 volunteers have stepped up as sexual and reproductive health counselors to be trained by AMOS and later replicate the lessons with their neighbors. And, we are doing what we call “sexual and reproductive health fairs”.
These health fairs are activities that we organize with local health authorities and health volunteers, where we gather large crowds in a community to address important topics, such as the concept of shared responsibility for family planning, access to safe and modern contraceptive methods, the importance of prenatal checkups and giving birth at a health unit. These have a recreational component that has helped us to talk about uncomfortable topics with different kinds of audiences, such as stereotypes of sexuality and gender. In one health fair alone we can reach around 80-100 people at once.
During health fairs, participants have the opportunity to ask question and provide comments. Check out some of the pictures below.
And, we are starting to see some positive results. People are starting to talk openly about the importance of safe family planning and the effects of machista attitudes. These may seem small changes, but they will have a ripple effect in the lives of so many people and future generations.
Stay tuned to learn more about the impact of this program!