Advocating for adolescent reproductive health in sub-Saharan Africa

Advocating for adolescent reproductive health in sub-Saharan Africa

Toolkit explores successful strategies for youth advocates in sub-Saharan Africa

This guide, produced by Advocates for Adolescents, is designed to help advocates in sub-Saharan Africa develop the skills to advocate for young people’s reproductive health education and services. It describes the main steps of an advocacy campaign and provides information on developing, implementing and evaluating a successful advocacy strategy. The guide provides a range of case studies drawn from Kenya, Ghana and Zambia that explore strategies and activities used by reproductive health advocates in the region. These include initiatives such as building partnerships to eliminate female genital mutilation (FGM), and generating support for youth friendly health services.

The guide looks in detail at needs assessment and goal setting; network building; involving youth; mobilising the public; and getting the support of gatekeepers and policy makers. It also includes sections on dealing with common questions and opposition, and on monitoring and evaluating advocacy efforts. Detailed tips are provided in each section. Overall lessons learned include the following: awareness changing is slow, therefore projects should plan for sustained advocacy efforts; advocates should aim to obtain broad consensus before focusing on specific issues; and projects should target the media and the public, in addition to opinion leaders.

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