The Nehemiah Project in Zimbabwe has launched an online programme for young people called ‘The Youth Momentum Online Forum’ - a brilliant way of continuing to provide relationships and sex education in the midst of ongoing government restrictions and lockdowns due to COVID-19.
The programme also aims to build resilience by capacity building through self-help projects, as a way of reducing the impacts of poverty and risky behaviours.
The Nehemiah Project uses a range of online platforms to reach as many young people as possible.
· Facebook posts directly educate their 600+ followers, for example by promoting the correct use of a condom.
· WhatsApp discussions are held twice a month with youth from the community schools.
· And Zoom discussions are held once a month to help young people with their concerns and facilitate discussions on topics such as sexual health and teenage pregnancy.
The comments section is open for the young people to comment or ask questions while the discussion is live, so they can receive a response straightaway.
The online discussions have been effective in providing effective and accurate information on sexual health issues, otherwise, young people would be ‘learning’ from the internet where information can be misleading or even dangerous.
The forum has been received with open arms, with young people commenting on how the online sessions help them and have even made them aware of things they did not know.
The Nehemiah Project is currently working on designing an online blog to strengthen its online presence as well as create more appealing content for its audience to increase engagement.
They hope to reach 1000 followers by the end of the year and envisage supporting the young people who participate with mobile data to allow them to continue participating in the live, online events.