Equality Matters

MY VOICE, MY HEALTH – A PROJECT BY YOUNG PEOPLE, FOR YOUNG PEOPLE

For over four years now, the ambitious “DAMCAM – My Voice, My Health” project has been underway. Its aim is to raise awareness and improve the health and sexual and reproductive rights of 30,000 young people aged 10 to 19 in the Kedougou region of Senegal, who have limited access to healthcare and education due to the region’s poverty.

DAMCAM’s action plan spans over five years, from 2019 to 2024, and is primarily funded by Global Affairs Canada. The project is being implemented on the ground by Crossroads International and its three partners in Senegal; ActionAid Senegal, APROFES and CONAFE, who have strengthened the capacities of local organizations to ensure community ownership of the project and increase its impact with the population.

 

 

BUILDING HEALTH SERVICES AND CAPACITy

The main objectives include strengthening sexual and reproductive health services, improving the quality and availability of services, reducing the stigma associated with the use of these services by adolescents, building the capacity of key players in the health system, and actively involving local elected representatives in awareness-raising campaigns.

The DAMCAM project has undergone considerable deployment over the past three years, reaching a growing number of young people through a variety of activities. Mobile Learning Laboratories (MLLs) are one of the project’s key innovations, aimed at providing quality training to young people on sexual and reproductive health through informative content. Fifteen MLL sites have been set up, equipped with 225 digital tablets and other technological equipment.

CREATING CLUBS TO BRING YOUNG PEOPLE TOGETHER

Educational booklets were also distributed to health facilities and schools on topics such as contraception, menstrual hygiene, gender equality and puberty. In total, 871 teenagers benefited from information sessions with a school mediator. In addition, the DAMCAM project has helped set up 32 Clubs de Jeunes Filles (CJF), enabling members to acquire key knowledge on sexual and reproductive health.

Free consultation days are regularly organized to meet the health needs of women and girls, and 37 health facilities have benefited from sexual and reproductive health kits to improve the quality of services provided. Last June, the region’s three districts were equipped with biomedical waste management equipment.

At the start of the project, a survey revealed that no teenagers were using modern contraception. But thanks to these awareness-raising campaigns and the provision of equipment, nearly 1,081 women, including 396 teenagers, have gained access to these contraceptive methods through the DAMCAM project.   

 

CONVINCING RESULTS AND A PROMISING FUTURE

These achievements, among many others, testify to the success of the DAMCAM project. We are proud of the progress made by our administrative and field teams, particularly in the face of the challenges encountered during the COVID-19 pandemic. After three years of action, DAMCAM has demonstrated its capacity for impact and holds great promise for the future. In the years to come, we will continue to deepen dialogue and reflection on sexual and reproductive health and rights, generate debate on the problems faced by adolescents in the region, and pursue actions that promote the empowerment and well-being of the people of Kedougou.

Thank you to all those who support us, from near and far. Let’s keep moving forward together!

DIABOU CISSOKHO (MID-WIFE) 

The pandemic reduced regular attendance at healthcare facilities.

Compliance with barrier measures had an impact on services, as the number of patients to be taken on was limited, causing delays in prenatal consultations, non-observance of planning Po, and more frequent home deliveries.


OUMOU DIALLO (Peer educator)

We teenagers who have benefited from the awareness-raising and training programs have a greater sense of control and are beginning to break out of the ignorance of which we were victims. We are more inclined to talk about our sexual problems. Early marriages have decreased, as has gender-based violence. School drop-out rates have fallen. We have developed greater leadership. Sexual issues are no longer taboo.


Related Posts - Blog Stories

We were in the middle of preparing for the budget orientation debates at the Fongolimbi town hall. Indeed, as part of the advocacy for gender-sensitive budgeting, we were preparing the directories of the Youth Councils of Fongolimbi to plead for reproductive health themes close to their hearts. It was then that I was approached:

Read More

Return to Blog

We use cookies to enhance your browsing experience, save personalized content, and analyze our traffic. By clicking “Accept”, you consent to our use of cookies.