E2A contributes to two recent publications focused on young people’s health and development
Integral to E2A’s learning agenda is a focus on meeting the sexual and reproductive health needs of adolescents and young people in resource-poor settings. As a part of our focus on young people, E2A contributed to two papers this year which followed seminal international conferences where the health, sexual rights and development of young people were center stage. The two papers argue for continued investments in and collaboration around young people, both from a rights-based perspective and as a driver of health and development. Both papers highlight the crucial role youth play in development, not only as beneficiaries of policies and programs, but also in planning, implementing and evaluating them. The papers provide key recommendations on critical issues related to youth as a preparation for ICPD Beyond 2014, which will reflect on the 20 years since the landmark International Conference on Population and Development set out its Programme of Action.
The first paper, published in April following the Global Youth Forum held in Bali last December, is written by Forum Facilitator Bruce Dick and is entitled “Working Together to Realize Young People’s Rights.” The paper, which has a particular focus on intersectoral collaboration, explores and synthesizes the commonalities and crosscutting issues discussed in the five thematic papers around which the conference and resulting declaration were organized. The topics covered in those thematic papers were:
- Staying healthy
- Comprehensive education
- Transitions to decent employment
- Families, youth rights and sexuality
- Fully inclusive civic participation
The second paper, “Invest in adolescents and young people: it pays,” is written by Venkatraman Chandra-Mouli of the World Health Organization and 12 co-authors including E2A staff, and is published in Reproductive Health. Developed following the Women Deliver conference held in Kuala Lumpur in May, the paper discusses key themes that reverberated throughout the conference on the health and development needs of adolescents and young people and promising solutions to meet them, including:
- Adolescents need comprehensive, accurate and developmentally appropriate sexuality education.
- Adolescent-centered health services can prevent sexual and reproductive health problems and detect and treat them if and when they occur.
- National governments have the authority and the responsibility to address social and cultural barriers to the provision of sexual and reproductive health education and services for adolescents and young people.