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Evans Odenyo

Evans Odenyo
Position: Reproductive health rights activist and football coach
Organization: MYSA
Evans is a young leader, a role model in is community in Mathare, Kenya and an advocate for family planning, including being a plenary speaker at the ICFP conference in Indonesia. – Nominator
Describe your contributions to and achievements in family planning.

As a young person living in Mathare slums in Nairobi i have seen how lack of family planning services can lead to poverty,poor education standards .Through this i have engaged my fellow youths and community of importance of planing our future through improving our reproductive health.I have done this by engaging in community dialogue,integrated outreaches,football for reproductive health trainings and drills.This has brought with it a very significant change in my community,a lot of young people in Mathare are now aware of their reproductive health rights and contraceptive information,most of them now are using this methods to ensure they achieve their goals in life.through this i have also been able to represent my country in international conference for family planning at youth plenary.

What sparked your passion for family planning?

I have seen young people more so girls dreams being unrealized,a lot of potential young leaders are being stagnated due to lack of information and reproductive health services.This has eventually led to a lot of social challenges and discrimination in the society.many young girls drop out of school due to early pregnancy,forced marriages and sexual violence.This are very sad reality but through efforts and engagment by the public health sector and health organization there can be great change.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced in your family planning efforts, and what have you done to overcome it?

I have faced a lot of challenges in family planing,some of the African community still believe in the old tradition and culture which violate the right of the girl child ,i have therefore engaged in a lot of community sensitization and dialogue to inform them on the effects of this harmful practices such as FGM,forced marriage and resistance on usage of contraceptive.the public health sector has also been dormant in youth friendly services but we have engaged them on the importance of this.

What is your (country/region/city)’s biggest challenge in family planning, and how can it be addressed?

The biggest challenge is early pregnancy and STI infection,this can be addressed through introduction of reproductive education to youth institution and youth activities such as sports.There should be also a lot of youth friendly offices which offer reproductive health services and information to young people since most of the cant access the public services due to age difference with the service providers.

What do you want to accomplish in the next 5 years?

I want to ensure that there will be no sexual related new infection among the young people in the Mathare slums,to ensure that young people reach their full potential and give the best out them through acquiring accessible family planning services.To ensure that public health service providers are friendly and accessible by all despite of gender,age,religion or race.To ensure that young people can access the right and valid information on reproductive health and rights in all youth spaces.

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