Dialogue meetings with Adolescents

Adolescents’ dialogue meetings involve continuous mutual exchange of views, ideas and opinions among adolescents about a concern in order to build a common understanding and promote individual, family and community action to address the concern

The objective of adolescent’s dialogue is to increase the level of concern in adolescents about the issues that affect them to catalyze actions that improve their standard of living. It seeks to promote adolescents practices that would enhance their quality of life.

KWID is using community dialogue approach to mobilize and empower adolescents to catalyze them to come up with actions to improve their situations

KWID have organized dialogue meetings for adolescents in Kamwezi sub-county to address health concerns and lead health lives. The dialogue sessions are aimed at equipping adolescents with health-related knowledge, skills, practices as well as positive values to empower them to attain and maintain healthy lives.

Adolescents participating in the dialogue meeting.  Adolescents  on the Demo garden

During the last quarter of 2016 (October to December) KWID facilitated 12 monthly adolescent dialogue meetings for four adolescent groups each comprising of 30 adolescents. The adolescents were guided to identify health related issues that affect their lives. Their contributions were:

  • Lack of sanitary pads (girls)
  • Peer pressure
  • Child labor
  • school drop-outs
  • Lack of safe and clean water
  • Harassment by parents
  • Lack of proper information in regard to growing up and sexuality
  • Un known HIV status
  • Early marriages
  • Early pregnancies
  • Selling of food by parents which lead to food shortage and poor feeding
  • Diarrhea due to poor water sources and poor sanitation
  • Malnutrition
  • Kwashiorkor
  • Stunted growth
  • Inadequate basic needs
  • Drug abuse
  • Sexually transmitted diseases
  • Poor feeding
  • Un cooperative parents
  • Lack of strict Laws in regard to food security
  • Not enforcing Laws like the children Act
  • Bad manners
  • Leaving home when nobody know where you are going
  • Walking at night or late in the evening

They were guided to come up with practical actions that can be implemented within their means to improve the situations they are facing.  They came up with action plans as below:

  • All adolescents agreed to be tested for HIV to know their HIV status
  • Adolescents agreed to be change agents by boiling water for drinking in their homes, asking their parents for 3 liter jerrycan to make tip tap (hand washing facility after toilet)
  • Talking with their parents/caregivers on issues of food insecurity and balanced diet
  • Establishing and maintaining back yard gardens
  • Abstinence and safer sexual practices
  • Reporting violence cases
  • Report child abuse cases
  • Improving hygiene and sanitation in homes through cleaning homes, constructing drying racks, smoking toilets, use of compost pits, cleaning their bodies and environment.
  • Sharing issues that worry them or annoy them
  • Reporting sexual abuse cases
  • Communicating with friends and caregivers in case of a worrying situation
  • Resist bad peer pressure groups instead join school health clubs and OVC clubs at KWID day care centers.
  • Seek prompt medical treatment in case of not feeling well
  • Avoid drug abuse
  • Participate in home chores to support parents
  • Ask for permission if you want to visit a friend or relative
  • Ask for platforms in churches and community groups to sensitize parents and caregivers on some of the challenges faced by adolescents especially poor feeding, inadequate basic needs, child labor, child neglect and harassment.

They were facilitated to evaluate the implementation of suggested action plans and they shared that the following action plans have been implemented:

  • Out of 120 adolescents participating in dialogue meetings, 25 reported to have started boiling water for drinking in their homes to ensure there is clean and safe water in the homes
  • Out of 120 adolescents participating in dialogue meetings, 45 reported to have established back yard gardens
  • Out of the 120 adolescents participating in the program, 60 have tested for HIV and received results
  • Out of 120 adolescents participating in dialogue meetings 4 have reported child abuse cases
  • Out of 120 adolescents participating in dialogue meetings, 30 have started Improving hygiene and sanitation in homes through cleaning homes, constructing drying racks, smoking toilets, use of compost pits
  • Out of 120 adolescents participating in dialogue meetings, 12 have put Tip Taps after their toilets
  • All adolescents participating in dialogue meetings have benefited in health education talks and life skill sessions.

Out of the issues shared by adolescents during dialogue sessions, KWID intervened by buying and distributing books to the children who come to the day care centers.

 

 

KWID has also stepped in by providing vegetable seedlings to adolescents to establish back yard gardens in their homes to be change agents in their homes, schools and communities.

KWID organized and facilitated 2 HIV testing out-reaches one at each day care center. Other out-reaches will be further organized to give the children opportunity to test for the second and third time per HIV testing guidelines.

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