Goal Malawi invests in youths as behaviour change agents

Goal Malawi, a local non – governmental organization says it will invest in the country’s young generation to adopt positive behaviours so that they could sustain the positive practices as they take up decision making positions in their future lives.

Goal Malawi’s deputy chief of party, Hester Nyasulu made the observation on Thursday in Mangochi during a district executive committee meeting on a four year youth project to be implemented in Balaka, Machinga and Mangochi respectively.

Nyasulu said the project would strive towards empowering the youth with sexual reproductive health and climate change interventions in order to equip them to be active change agents in their respective communities.

“This is a deliberate move geared at taking the youth on board to participate in the preservation of the environment and make right decisions for a better future,” Nyasulu said.

Nyasulu pointed out that the objective of the initiative was to increase the adoption of positive behaviours among in and out-of-school youths in the three participating districts of Balaka, Machinga and Mangochi.

He disclosed that the intervention had two development goals which were sustainable livelihoods improvement and social development whereby sexual reproductive health issues were integrated in key sector activities.

“The project has three outputs but emphasis will mainly be on integration of messages on climate change and climate change and SRH services adoption,” he said. “We would like the youth to appreciate the relationship between family planning and climate change, for example.”

Nyasulu further said the intervention would link the youth with a Youth Alert radio programme run by PSI through radio listening clubs to solidify the best practices. He also said the programme would engage with Youthnet and Counselling and the youth department to avoid duplication of efforts.

He said key activities in the project would include development of information, education and communication materials, building linkages among service providers on one hand and enhancement of natural resource based enterprises and water shed management on the other.

“Considering that this is a communication for development approach, a lot of effort will go to development of IEC materials for behaviour change and smart agriculture activities will be promoted,” Nyasulu added.

In his remarks, District Environmental Health Officer for Mangochi Kondwani Mamba asked Goal Malawi to ensure they build strong linkages with relevant partners and engage the DEC on a regular basis for the success of the project.

“Youths are the most critical aspect of the nation and therefore you would do well to work very closely with relevant sectors throughout the implementation period of this project since the ultimate goal of government partners is to play a complementary role in its development programmes,” he emphasised.

The four year project called Pamawa ndi Achinyamata which is being funded by the United States Agency for International Development through a consortium of Goal Malawi, PSI and Centre for Social Research will target the youth from the age bracket of 10 – 35 across the district.

It has a budget line of USD6 million.

Source: Malawi News Agency