A side event of the World Health Assembly, Youth Lead: Setting Priorities for Adolescent Health brought together young leaders, policy makers, and diverse stakeholders for a dynamic discussion on meaningful youth participation in decision-making at local and international levels. The event was co-sponsored by the LMG Project, Women Deliver, the Partnership for Maternal, Newborn & Child Health, the White Ribbon Alliance, the World YWCA, and the International Federation of Medical Students’ Associations.
Director for Global Partnerships and Advocacy for the LMG Project, Eva Ros, welcomes the first panelists including (from left) Ibil Surya, National Youth Representative of the Indonesian Planned Parenthood Association; William Yeung, Young and Well Cooperative Research Centre Australia; Meggie Mwoka, Regional Coordinator for Africa for the International Federation of Medical Students Association; Daniel Tobon Garcia, Member of the Board of Directors for the Youth Coalition for Sexual and Reproductive Rights; and Katja Iversen, CEO of Women Deliver who acted as moderator.
Daniel Tobon Garcia speaks to the audience, “It’s important to have evidence. Count us, but let us count. We’re doing work on the ground. We’re working with our peers so we can tell you what is happening.”
William Yeung (center) delivers remarks with Ibil Surya (left) and Meggie Mwoka (right): “Young people are limited in where they can go for mental health services and support. We need to provide a supportive environment where young people can maximize their potential and flourish.”
“As a young clinician, I know that sometimes we don’t understand adolescent health issues and this is not covered in medical schools. We, even young service providers, need to be trained in adolescent sexual and reproductive health, especially in regards to combatting stigma and taboo,” stated Meggie Mwoka.
On the second panel, “Now What? Moving Youth Participation to Action on Adolescent Health Priorities,” moderator Cecilia Garcia Ruiz (right), Gender Program Director at Espolea and a Women Deliver Young Leader, introduces Caitlin Chandler, Program Officer, Community, Rights and Gender Department at The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria.
Jane Ferguson, Scientist for the World Health Organization’s Department of Maternal, Newborn, Child, and Adolescent Health, gives remarks as Heather Barclay (left) of the International Planned Parenthood Federation and Linnea Hakansson of the World YWCA look on.