The Story Workshop
Educational Trust - SWET

Sankha Wekha

Sankha Wekha

With funding from United Nations International Children’s Fund (UNICEF) Story Workshop Educational Trust (SWET) was implementing a seven months (June-December 2014) sexual and reproductive health rights project called Sankha Wekha (It’s Your Choice).

The goal of the project was to empower the youth to take control of their own sexual and reproductive health rights.

The project was implemented in 4 districts of Balaka, Dedza, Mchinji and Mzimba South. In each district, 2 Traditional Authorities (T/As) were selected in partnership with District Health Office (DHO) and District Youth Office (DYO) based on the agreed criteria which was mostly the need for SRHR for the hard to reach Youth.

Therefore T/A Chanthunya and T/A Amidu were selected in Balaka; Dedza had T/As Chilikumwendo and Kasumbu. Mchinji selected T/As Zulu and Mavwere whilst Mzimba had Mbelwa and Chindi as selected T/As.

In each T/A a youth club was established comprising of 25 members ranging between 10-19 years of age. Existing youth clubs were also incorporated into the groups to avoid setting up new structures whilst in other areas new youth clubs were established.

During the project implementation period, SWET conducted the following activities which in turn have lead to the success of the project; project presentation to the district executive committee (DEC) base line survey, community orientation and sensitization, Radio listener club formation, radio magazine programme, training sessions, exchange visits, open day campaigns, stakeholders’ meetings, video profiling, ongoing monitoring and evaluation, end of project evaluation and DEC exit meetings.

Sankha Wekha project had five objectives. Activities that led to the achievement of the objective have been attached to each objective.

To mobilize the youth, provide information and create demand for services to adolescents including HIV testing and counseling, family planning, condoms, medical male circumcision, ART and psychosocial support

Achievement of objective
Clubs outreach activities, Open day forums and exchange visits provided an opportunity for the youth to access HTC services and family planning methods (short term) that were provided by our partners. 292 youth accessed HTC services during outreach activities.

To create an awareness of sexual reproductive health and rights (SRHR) issues that affect the youth at community and individual level to adolescents and  increase access to sexual and reproductive health services

Achievement of objective
This objective has been achieved through trainings and refresher trainings that were conducted. 200 RLG members were trained in the following areas; SRHR, TFD, Radio Listening club management and peer education.

To facilitate the sharing of correct and comprehensive SRHR information between and among youth

Achievement of objective
This objective has been achieved through trainings that were conducted. The RLG members were trained in the following areas; SRHR, TFD, radio listening club management and peer education

To develop a conducive and enabling environment where  the youth are:

    1. Allowed to express their views on issues of SRHR
    2. Equipped to initiate interventions that contribute to the reduction of SRH risks, including the removal of barriers and de-stigmatisation, open discussion, and demand for services
    3. Able to access appropriate SRHR services freely in a health system that meets their needs.

Achievement of objective The RLG that were formed allowed the youth to freely express their views on SRHR as they were able to sit with their peers and discuss issues that affect them in their everyday life. The radio program also provided a platform of dialogue and discussion amongst RLG members as they were able to hear different issues affecting the youth in different parts of the country.

Involvement of health officials from the nearest health centres provided an opportunity for the youth to easily access SRHR services because of the relationship created between the youth and their community health workers.

The RLGs were also able to freely express their views on SRHR through TFD performances they were conducting

To promote collaboration and sharing of the best practices amongst different partners. 

Achievement of Objective Stake holders meetings that were conducted during the project implementation period allowed for improvement in the management of the project as the different stakeholders were able to provide guidance on the various issues that were being raised from the RLGs.

SWET also used the stakeholders meeting as an opportunity of providing progress of the project to the stake holders so that they get updated on the project activities