Government has said a holistic approach in dealing with challenges faced by youths in the country is important in the advancement of the nation.
Central Province Permanent Secretary Denny Lumbama said when he officially closed a 10 days national peer educators training at Zambezi Source Lodge in Kabwe that government recognizes the importance of a holistic approach when dealing with challenges faced by youths in the nation.
He said government’s commitment is evidenced by deliberate policies put in place to support the positive growth of youths such as in the national youth policy, national plan of action, the African youth charter and the national standards on Sexual Reproductive Health (SRH) and HIV/AIDS.
Mr Lumbama noted that peer education was a popular and important strategy for Sexual Reproductive Health (SRH) and HIV/AIDS programs throughout the world.
He said the recently adopted approach to peer education has transformed both government and Non-governmental organizations towards the development of a Health Agenda for young people in the nation.
Mr Lumbama said that Peer education has been preferred as it has been proved to enhance communication among educators and their audience.
The Permanent Secretary noted that young people were more receptive to information from their peers.
Mr. Lumbama however observed that these interventions would not be effective without capacity building for peer educators a situation that has compelled government through the ministry of Sport, Youth and Child Development to initiate the training that is the first of its kind since the launch of the National Standards for SRH.
He further commended the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) for the financial, material and technical support that they have rendered to the successful implementation of the training.
And speaking earlier Planned Parenthood Association of Zambia (PPAZ) Director of Programs and Partnerships, Edford Mutuma commended government for its continued support in the fight against HIV/AIDS.
Mr. Mutuma expressed hope that the new approach to peer education training will go along way in sexual reproductive health and HIV/AIDS programs.
Over 15 youths have since been trained in SRH and HIV/AIDS countrywide.