By Elijah Ugani
Excellent Education Welfare Scheme (ECEWS) in partnership with the United Nation Population Funds (UNPF) has flagged off a campaign tagged “Wise Up Cross River State”.
The campaign according to ECEWS Director of Programs, Mr. Asuquo Etuk while briefing journalists in Calabar said, “The campaign is an initiative developed to respond to the reproductive health gaps observed in young people, especially the marginalized subset of this population (out of school youth, street children and other most at risk population)”.
He further disclosed that the Wise Up campaign will use the creativity of music, drama, dances and social media as tools to drive their aim home as well as “Ensure that it’s young people driven to engage their peers to increase access to reproductive health information, commodities and services”.
On his part, the Youth Program Officer, United Nations Population Funds, Dr. Araoyinbo Idowu: “The Wise Up Cross River Campaign is an innovative and creative way of passing information or massage on prevention of HIV, STI, unintended pregnancy which affects millions of people out there and other medical issues”.
Furthermore, he maintained that, “Within the context of an earlier sexual debut in Cross River (13.7 years) young adolescent girls are responsible for approximately 80% of unintended pregnancies. In Cross River State, 22.6% young people have initial sex typically have multi sexual partners, 15.1% of young people that have genital tract infection with 40-45% seeking treatment outside the health facilities “.
The campaign is structured in three stages: one is training of 20 journalists on health reportage, 20 persons on monitoring and evaluation, 20 health workers and 200 volunteers drawn from collaborating partners and NGOs between now and November 30th, 2016.
Stage two is the condom zone; a stationary stand will be manned by young volunteer throughout the course of the carnival from 10am to 4pm daily with condom demonstration, access to condom, referrals, interpersonal communication, music etc.
The last stage being the carnival parade with a float designed for the purpose with 22 HCT, (HIV testing points) to be located along the carnival route.
According to the team, they aim at breaking the world’s record of 3715 persons tested in a day by striving for 5000.
Since You Are Here, Support Good Journalism
CrossRiverWatch was founded on the ideals of deploying tech tools to report in an ethical manner, news, views and analysis with a narrative that ensures transparency in governance, a good society and an accountable democracy.
Everyone appreciates good journalism but it costs a lot of money. Nonetheless, it cannot be sacrificed on the altar of news commercialisation.
Consider making a modest contribution to support CrossRiverWatch's journalism of credibility and integrity in order to ensure that all have continuous free access to our noble endeavor.