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UNFPA and PFHA partner to Empower Adolescents and Young People in TVET Colleges The “Noi Approach” continues to improve lives!

10 June 2021

Vientiane, 10 June 2021 - In support of the priorities of the Ministry of Education and Sports (MoEs), the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the Promotion of Family Health Association (PFHA) supported by AIDS HealthCare Foundation signed a Memorandum of Understanding to collaborate for empowering adolescents and young people studying in technical and vocational colleges through the comprehensive Noi Approach.

 

Dr. Chansy Phimphachanh, President of Promotion of Family Health Association said that accessing to the right information on reproductive health, including HIV/AIDs and familly planning is essential particularly to those who live in the rulal area with limited access to healthcare. As such, it is an opportunity to collaborate with UNFPA and the Ministry of Education and Sports to develop peer-to-peer coaches capable of effectively communicating with young men and women so that they can disseminate information to young men and women effectively”

 

The partnership aims to achieve gender equality and empower adolescents and young people through Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) in Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) colleges in Champasak, Saravan, Sekong, and Attapeu provinces by using the government endorsed CSE manual and materials. The collaboration will increase adolescents and young people’s access to youth-friendly information and services on sexual and reproductive health and psychosocial support through the Noi-Yakhoo Mobile App and UNFPA-supported telephone helplines.

 

Mr. Saykham Phanthavong, Deputy Director-General, TVET Department said: "I believe that CSE education is critical in our society and that it should be fully integrated into our national curriculum, with an emphasis on youth, to enable them to truly understand and know how to make informed and responsible decisions in order to live a healthy life." So they can grow into responsible adults in the twenty-first century”

 

 

Through this collaboration, it is expected that 120 TVET teachers in target provinces will be trained. These trained teachers will deliver CSE to a total of 5,399 TVET students, with 3,470 students in Champasak, 595 in Saravan, 642 in Sekong, and 692 in Attapeu. These adolescents and young people will have better knowledge of reproductive and sexual health, gender equality, values and will be equipped with skills for making smart choices.

CSE empowers adolescents and young people to make informed and responsible decisions to lead a healthy life. CSE advances gender equality, the rights, and empowerment of adolescents and young people with the human rights-based approach. UNFPA supports the government in scaling up CSE implementation in three main areas: system strengthening for CSE in-schools, including pre-service training to teachers; providing essential life skills for out-of-school adolescents and youth; and responding to COVID-19 through innovation and digital platforms.

 

Mariam Khan, Country Representative of UNFPA, said that “We are pleased to collaborate with PFHA to reach more adolescents and young people, especially in southern provinces. Informed, empowered adolescent boys and girls can make healthy decisions about body autonomy and relationships. Thus managing peer pressure and avoiding sexually transmitted infections, HIV and unplanned pregnancies.

 

UNFPA and PFHA collaboration includes advocacy for increasing investment in adolescent girls, promoting the rights of adolescent girls, increasing youth participation in decision making and promoting the campaign ‘Me, My Body, My Planet, My Future’ by engaging young people to take action on the environment, their health, bodies, and contribute to achieving SDGs in Lao PDR.

 

UNFPA and PFHA partnership falls within the framework of UNFPA’s cooperation with the Government of Lao PDR, the overall aim is to implement the Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD PoA) and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

 

UNFPA is the United Nations sexual and reproductive health agency, works in over 150 countries including Lao PDR, to achieve zero maternal deaths, zero unmet need for family planning, and zero gender-based violence.

 

The Promotion of Family Health Association (PFHA) is a Lao National Nonprofit Association (NPA). It was approved by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MOHA) on June 28, 2012, to serve vulnerable and disadvantaged groups. PFHA works with communities both in urban and rural areas to create a health impact. PFHA currently works in Oudomxay, Luang Namtha, Bokeo, Phongsaly, Xiengkhouang, Vientiane, Vientiane Capital, Sekong, and Savannakhet provinces.

 

For more information please contact:

 

Mr. Oloth Sene-Asa,

National Programme Analyst for ASRH, UNFPA Lao PDR

Email: sene-asa@unfpa.org

 

Dr. Souphon Sayavong, Executive Director, PFHA, Lao PDR

Email: souphon.laopfha@gmail.com