Safe Maternity - Strong Community
Improving Reproductive Health Care Access via Education & Advocacy
Motivating adolescent girls to become Reproductive Health Advocates. 80 Training Courses held in two months June and July 2012 in which 1628 BKAF (Adolescent Girls for Sexual and Reproductive Health & Rights club members participated. The training courses were conducted by PHREB's Community Health Workers, Family Planning Staff, Family Welfare Assistants and local female school teachers. The training courses were organized in the location that are close in proximity and easily accessible to the village, including primary schools or religious institution (Maktab), NGO schools or Community Clinic to ensure that all the girls from the club can easily participate. Government Officials were also invited to visit the training sessions. Local religious leaders were informed about the training courses and invited to visit the courses. Cooperation from local Imams was outstanding. During training, adolescent girls learned: I) How to maintain hygiene during menstruation, II) How to keep fit through proper diet and good hygiene during menstruation III) How to discuss with other girls in the village about the prevailing superstitions on menstruation. IV) How to teach other sisters about hygienic practices and keep fit during menstruation. IV) What are sexual and reproductive rights, V) How to prevent common diseases, VI) What are the main complications during pregnancy delivery and post delivery, VII) How child marriage destroys a girl’s future and how to prevent child marriage, VIII) How does the adolescent girls’ club BKAF mobilize communities against child marriage and violence against women. Below are comments and feedback from the participants, facilitators and local elders about the training courses:
Sahpala Yesmin, age 14, from Taramarchara, Dhalghata Island: the lessons were very easy to learn. The sister [term used to describe female facilitators] was so friendly and I enjoyed every single moment in learning about my life, my health and my future. PHREB is an organization that wants to help our sisters and girls like myself to overcome all miseries.
Sayeda Begum, age 17, from Rafarghuna, Matarbari: From now I know how to maintain hygiene during menstruation. My mother never allowed me to go out during menstruation, even I cannot see daylight and eat on my choice. I was told always that this is the dirtiest period of my life.
Rubi Akther, age 12, from Pariarpara, Shaplapore: I saw my sister died during delivery at 14 years old. My parents now want to marry me off but today I have learned how to defend my rights and say NO to child marriage. In my village almost all girls are married at 12. I am not married because I not beautiful.
PHREB Community Health Worker Ms. Shefali Rani Dey conducting a training Photo credit: PHREB
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