Mon to Fri. 8am to 6pm

YOUTHHEALTH

Sexual and Gender-based Violence (Second Chance)
Sexual and gender-based violence occurs at every stage of a conflict, from before the fight to returning home. The victims are most often women and adolescent girls and boys. Such violence is common now in the Southwest and Northwest regions of Cameroon. In Muyuka, for example, armed conflicts, especially where combatants (non-state armed groups) mix up with civilian populations. Rape is used as a weapon of the crisis intended to humiliate, torture, dominate, stigmatize, and disrupt social ties, and as other forms of violent assault; Women and girls may be forced to offer sex in exchange for food, shelter, or protection; other abuses include sexual threats, exploitation, humiliation, molestation, incest, torture, and domestic violence. The impact of violence, especially rape, can be disastrous. Injuries, unwanted pregnancies, sexual dysfunction, STIs, and HIV/AIDS are physical consequences. Damage to mental health includes anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, and suicide.

They know their economic hardships, family rejection, feelings of guilt, poor attention to their births, little respect, and trouble finding their role as teenage moms. The project “A Second Chance” dignifies their process as they learn to get to know themselves differently, ease their transition from girls into mothers, and support their body awareness and knowledge of their human rights as pregnant women and mothers. A series of workshops will contribute to social transformation through information, livelihood, arts, a playful methodology, and yoga and enable girls to live a transformative pregnancy, birth, and empowered motherhood.

Between now and December 2020, “A Second Chance” will meet the early recovery needs of over 600 young girls (abused pregnant and teen mothers) living in conflict-affected areas. The activities include workshops and cash-based assistance to support essential sanitation, hygiene (WASH), and emergency needs for pregnant teens in labour and host families.

The project will be implemented by PEP staff and Restless Peace Coalition members who significantly contributed to the design of this project. PEP AFRICA collaborates with UNFPA, INEOS, and UNHCR to coordinate efforts across sectors with staff involved in protection, security, community, and health services. Implementation will also be based on their extensive network and relationship with the broader community and local humanitarian actors operational in the target area.

Menstrual Health Management (Lifestyle Initiative)
Menstruation often derails their dreams when they may miss weeks of school at a time, and they may be forced into early marriages that blight their goals and shrink their world. So many girls in rural areas often drop out of school when they reach puberty because they have limited access to feminine hygiene products. They need access to affordable sanitary feminine products. When a family’s income is a dollar a day, spending even $3 a month per girl for conventional menstrual pads is unaffordable. In many rural villages, young girls must improvise, using bark, mud, plastic bags, napkins, tissue paper, cotton, wet newspaper, etc. Some sit in the sand, causing flea-borne infections. They need access to affordable sanitary feminine products.

Young people living in slums deserve the opportunity to go to school and benefit from an education, but the obstacles associated with poverty sometimes get in the way. For tens of thousands of young women in Cameroon, their monthly period causes them to miss more than six weeks of school a year because they do not have a pad. Research shows that sanitary pads and health education can reduce absenteeism by 75%. The project may be the most cost-effective means of fostering personal and community development in developing countries by educating and empowering teenage girls. For less than $5.00, you can change the life of a girl.

“support-my-school” is people helping women provide these girls in need by producing¬†reusable pads and delivering them to poor communities, often along with health and hygiene classes. In these communities, volunteers also teach women and teenage girls to make their pads, providing donated materials and supplies and teaching sewing skills while enabling the teen girls to continue their education even during their menstrual periods. Educating teenage girls is the most effective means of improving their lives and fostering economic development.  

THE GOAL is to support the school administration, encourage teachers to enhance educational programs and raise funds to supplement existing programs and structures by the end of 2019.  
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