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Youth Partner

Name: Luisa Cristovao Fumo
Age: 19
Nationality: Mozambican
Affiliated Organization: Mozambican Association for Family Development (AMODEFA)

Luisa Cristovao Fumo has been an activist since 2000. Due to her willingness to help others she is also an adviser for her school’s advice room. She works in the blood bank of Maputo’s Central Hospital, which conducts various sensitization activities such as performances for young people encouraging them to donate blood and help prevent HIV. Her goal is for all youth to learn about HIV/AIDS, family planning and other issues.

During her free time Luisa enjoys listening to music, dancing, and reading.


Name: Jeremias “Jerry” Medes
Age: 18
Nationality: Mozambican
Affiliated Organization: Mozambican Association for Family Development (AMODEFA)

Jeremias “Jerry” Mendes was only 14 years old when he first started working with AMODEFA in 1999. Young and energetic, Jerry was also the first member of his school’s Advice Room. His dedication to his work has made him the head of his neighborhood’s association for the development of youth in suburban areas. He gets a lot of support from his family and colleagues and enjoys working with people who are willing to work.

Like other teenagers, Jerry enjoys watching movies and going to the beach with friends. He enjoys talking to different people from all walks of life and his role model is the UN Secretary General, Mr. Kofi Annan.


UNFPA in Mozambique

HIV/AIDS in Mozambique is spreading very rapidly and its impact is devastating. About 350 persons are infected per day and 45% of infections occur among Mozambicans under 24 years of age.

The youth population is estimated at 6 million and about 80% of female youth initiate their sexual life at the ages of 15-19 years. Consequently, 60% of girls in the 15-19 age group are either pregnant with their first child or are already mothers. Infection rates among the 15-19 years are much higher among young girls (16%) than among boys (9%).

The Government of Mozambique has adopted policy measures for the prevention, protection and care of HIV/AIDS. The National AIDS Council is the coordinating body of the national government strategies. The process of translating policy to action at the local level has been rather slow. Meantime, the spread of HIV along the major economic corridors is increasing drastically.

In 1999, with the support of UNFPA, the Government adopted an integrated strategy to provide information, communication and education to adolescents. The main goal is to adopt and implement polices and programmes at the central and local levels that improve the knowledge, skills, behaviour and practices of sexual and reproductive health of youth. The approach involves three ministries: Youth & Sports, Education and Health. Civil society, NGO’s and youth associations are also partners. The Ministry of Education focuses on youth in schools, the Ministry of Youth conducts out-of-school interventions, and the Ministry of Health provides the necessary framework for youth-friendly clinics.

UNFPA assists the Government to attain the national goals in the field of reproductive health. UNFPA also co-funded a national survey in 2001, on the information, knowledge and behavior of youth on issues of sexual and reproductive health. Useful information was gathered enabling effective planning and definition of specific strategies to address the needs of youth

The experiences with youth friendly clinics in the capital city and Gaza province have been very successful. Increasingly, youth are seeking professional counseling and advice for their sexual reproductive health. Furthermore, HIV testing facilities are working to encourage youth to use their services. Services for youth are becoming comprehensive and new avenues are being explored to assist youth victims of sexual abuse.
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