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Young Mothers Project Launched

The Viseisei Sai Health Centre in Vuda launched its ‘Young Mothers Project’ yesterday after a needs assessment project was carried out. The project is aimed at young mothers from 15
01 Mar 2015 09:49
Young Mothers Project Launched
Community health workers for Viseisei Sai Health Centre in Vuda yesterday. Photo: Sheetal Prasad

The Viseisei Sai Health Centre in Vuda launched its ‘Young Mothers Project’ yesterday after a needs assessment project was carried out.

The project is aimed at young mothers from 15 years and above who are teenagers and single.

Based at the centre, Professor Dr Swaran Naidu said: “This is especially for young mothers who need support.

“For women who are disempowered due to the lack of knowledge or due to the lack of awareness; this is important.”

Dr Naidu said it was important that the young people were told about safe sex, abstinence and the provisions of contraceptives.|

“Many end up having abortions which is very risky to their lives and their health. Once a young woman gives birth, it means giving up on their education to take care of the child because they do not realise their full potential.

“This initiative is funded and supported by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).”

Based on assessments, Dr Naidu pointed out that most of these young mothers wished to have some career to continue life in a better way.

“They wish to have a better life but they do not know how to go about doing so. We encourage stakeholders to buy into this issue to support and guide these young mothers into the right way, the professor said.

“This was truly to work of the community health workers who aided in identifying the young mothers and act as advocates. We are getting them engaged into development skills so they can get employed later in life somewhere,” she said.

Viseisei health educator Seremaia Koroi was one man who worked hard to complete the findings from the needs assessment.

“Ten per cent of the young women interviewed said no to grabbing the chance to get back into school as they do not feel trusted to leave their child behind with a guardian,” Mr Koroi said.

“For some, they do not have anybody else to look after the child if they go back into school while for others they sit at home in the wait for a hope.”

Acting divisional medical officer West Dr Susana Nakalevu said there were seven health outcomes and adolescent health was one of them.

The needs assessment last three months and was conducted solely in Viseisei. More than 10 community health workers in Viseisei were involved in the assessment.

Feedback:  sheetalp@fijisun.com.fj

 

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