Adolescents and Youth
UNFPA promotes young people’s preparedness for family life and their access to reproductive health information and services. We support national institutions in developing and integrating the courses on healthy lifestyle that address sexual and reproductive health and HIV/AIDS prevention issues for secondary schools.
On a global level, UNFPA’s efforts are guided by its Framework for Action on Adolescents and Youth, which articulates the organization’s multisectoral strategy to promote the comprehensive development of young people worldwide. Its four pillars include:
- addressing population, youth, and poverty issues at the policy level;
- expanding access to gender-sensitive, life skills–based sexual and reproductive health including HIV education in schools and community settings;
- promoting a core package of health and sexual and reproductive health/HIV services;
- encouraging young people’s leadership and participation within the context of sector-wide approaches, poverty reduction strategies and health sector reforms.
These goals are particularly important in Uzbekistan where population is predominantly young, with children younger than age 15 comprising about 40% of the population and youth under the age of 24 accounting for nearly two-thirds. The Government has been highly prioritizing youth-targeted development policies, and in the recent years adopted regulations promoting youth-friendly health services. However, more remains to be done to make these services more accessible and address the sexual and reproductive health needs of young people.
Thus, UNFPA supports Ministry of Health of Uzbekistan to integrate practice of youth friendly health services in primary health care across country, and a number of legal documents on providing confidential youth-friendly services were adopted with the Fund’s support.
2005, UNFPA has been supporting a groundbreaking and comprehensive youth-to-youth initiative, Y-PEER network in Uzbekistan. Through the network and using peer-to-peer education approach, UNFPA strives to promote a healthy life style among young people, and increase their awareness in issues of sexual and reproductive health and rights, HIV/AIDS, stigma and discrimination against people living with HIV, gender equality, and drug abuse. Currently, the network brings together more than 350 active volunteers nationwide. UNFPA supports various capacity building activities for media representatives to sensitize them on issues surrounding adolescents’ sexual and reproductive health and rights.
In order to respond to the actual needs and interest of young people, UNFPA in 2009 initiated UNFPA Youth Advisory Panel (YAP) which consists of young people, members of youth NGOs. Panel’s objective is to provide feedback on development and implementation of UNFPA youth-related activities and advise on their improvement. Practice of YAP helps to ensure that UNFPA shifts from working for young people, to working in partnership with young people across all youth related areas.
Highlights of succes in this area - find out how UNFPA makes a difference
UNFPA-supported Youth-Peer Network Helps Young People Learn about Adolescent and Reproductive Health Issues“This is my first year with Y-PEER (Youth Peer Education Network), and the first meeting with activists from all over Uzbekistan. It is amazing how in these three days we all get to know each other better, learn from each other’s experiences, brainstorm and come up with new fantastic ideas”.
These are impressions of Mokhigul Juraeva from Samarkand. Mokhigul is relatively new to Y-PEER, but, in her 20, has already delivered a number of training sessions on HIV/AIDS prevention, healthy lifestyle and reproductive health to her peers in Samarkand and the regions. Since it was established in Uzbekistan five years ago, the Youth-Peer network continues to grow, carrying away more and more young people with ideas of voluntarism and peer-to-peer education.