International Youth Day at the Githurai Youth Empowerment Centre: Meet Lucy Melvin

Earlier this month, the Githurai Youth Empowerment Centre in Githurai, Nairobi County, Kenya celebrated International Youth Day and hosted a panel to discuss vital issues affecting youth in Kenya, namely teenage pregnancy, youth unemployment, and access to family planning measures. Photographer Brian Otieno interviewed participants about how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected them personally, how access to information on family planning and sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) has been impacted, and what they hope for the future.

Watch this space to meet the youths facilitating change in Githurai!

Lucy Melvin, photographed by Brian Otieno for DSW.

“I feel like a lot of things have changed since the beginning of the pandemic. First off, many of the activities we used to do at the youth centre have stopped. Access to SRH services and information has also reduced and, because of that, many young girls are getting pregnant because nobody is there is to guide and talk to them about family planning and the use of contraceptives.

To ensure that my rights and our rights as youths are promoted and respected, I believe young people should be educated on SRHR and family planning. There is a need to reach out to many people in the community with the right information and equip them with the skills that they will use to make their life better.”

Lucy Melvin, 22, is a member of the Link Empowerment Initiative in Githurai, Nairobi, Kenya.

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