Online Program

Youth leadership in practice: Addressing teen sexual and reproductive health

Tuesday, November 5, 2013 : 3:30 p.m. - 3:45 p.m.

Esther Tahrir, MPH, GOJoven International, Public Health Institute, Oakland, CA
The Public Health Institute's Youth Leadership in Sexual and Reproductive Health Program (GOJoven) builds the capacity of young Latin American leaders to act as social change agents to address adolescent sexual and reproductive health and rights (ASRHR) behaviors, policies, programs and services at individual, organizational and community levels. Young local leaders often face multiple challenges to their own SRH such as unwanted pregnancies, sexual violence and discrimination in obtaining family planning services, as well as lack of support from adult leaders, organizations and government.

GOJoven is an experientially based transformative leadership program based on Freire popular education pedagogy and adult education learning theory. Over 200 young alumni from Belize, Guatemala, Mexico and Quintana Roo are currently implementing their leadership, ASRHR, and program development skills to motivate positive local responses to the SRHR service and education needs of adolescents.

A 2011 retrospective external evaluation of GOJoven found the program contributing to improvements at all three levels. Most GOJoven alumni are in increasingly influential SRHR leadership roles. GOJoven has evidenced positive effects on organizations' youth and SRHR knowledge, programming and focus, inter-organizational collaboration and organizational visibility. Many new ASRHR related activities and services have been implemented in local communities as a result of GOJoven and GOJoven programming has contributed to positive changes in community members' knowledge, attitudes, skills and behaviors.

Investing in building the capacity of young leaders to improve ASRHR is a sustainable and effective way to ensure advancement in opportunities, behaviors, services, and programs that lead to improved ASRH outcomes.

Learning Areas:

Administration, management, leadership
Advocacy for health and health education
Conduct evaluation related to programs, research, and other areas of practice

Learning Objectives:
Evaluate data on the results of a multi-year multi-country adolescent sexual and reproductive health program Explain the importance of youth leadership development as a strategy to advance sexual and reproductive health opportunities for adolescents

Keyword(s): Youth, Sexuality

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the program director.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.