By Nnedinma C Okeke  

Awka, June 22, 2021 (MOI) Executive Secretary, Anambra State Primary Healthcare Development Agency (ASPHCDA), Dr Chioma Ezenyimulu says Anambra State has done a lot to ensure that family planning services are available for the young adults.   

Dr Ezenyimulu said this during a courtesy visit by a team of the International Youth Alliance for Family Planning (IYAFP) at the ASPHCDA office, Awka.  

She noted that they had an array of family planning services available at the Primary Health Centres (PHCs) across the state.  

“Our PHCs offer family planning services and we have the available services to render such at the health facilities.  

“We also have partners such as The Challenge Initiative (TCI) that have been helping the state in family planning services.  

“They are strong partners in family planning activities in the state and they have supported the training of health workers in the use of family planning tools in PHCs,’’ Dr Ezenyimulu explained.  

While noting that the youths visit health facilities for family planning services, the ES said they use opportunities such as World Menstrual Hygiene Day, International Day of the Girl-Child to sensitise young people on their Sexual Reproductive Health Rights (SRHRs).  

“In doing, this we collaborate with the Ministry of Education; we go to schools and we go to the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) camps to also sensitise the youths on these issues.  

“It is feasible and necessary that the youths are aware, this includes the girl-child and the adolescents. Both males and females need the information and we cannot run away from it.  

“With proper guidance, we should be able to put up a strong policy and create an avenue to always keep our youths informed on these matters for those in the urban and rural areas,’’ Dr Ezenyimulu said.  

The Family Planning Coordinator, Anambra State Ministry of Health (SMOH), Mrs Chioma Okedo noted that provision of family planning services differ from one health facility to another.  

She said that this depended on the level of training of the health workers so there was need to train more health workers on it.  

A representative of the IYAFP, Ms Madonna Badom noted that the organisation in partnership with Population Reference Bureau (PRB) was implementing Sustaining Evidence-Driven Advocacy (SEDA) programme across Uganda, Kenya, Ethiopia, Nigeria and Burkina Faso.  

The SEDA Project according to her is a continuation of the Empowerment, Evidence-Driven Advocacy (EEDA) project – an initiative to improve implementation of existing family planning policies.  

“This is especially for those that support youth access to and use of contraception also to generate new funding and policy commitments for family planning in response to evidence-driven advocacy.  

“Our purpose here is to see how family planning and SRHRs are been practiced in Anambra State to know if it is something our organisation can expand,’’ she explained.   Ms Goodness Odey also a representative of IYAFP said their focus was on policy advocacy to enable improvements in some challenges faced in young people accessing family planning services.  (MOI)

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