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Team captain of one of the teams that participated HEDSO’s football tournament receives a ball. HEDSO uses football to sensitize the youth against SGBV, HIV and teenage pregnancies. PHOTO/HEDSO


By Arnold Ageta

The ‘Ending Triple Threats Campaign’ Nyamira edition has gained momentum in the county as the campaign seeks to sensitize adolescent girls, young women, and youths in the rural communities about sexual and gender-based violence, HIV awareness and prevention, and teenage pregnancies.

The campaign, which uses sports to draw the youth to their services, held a one-day football tournament at Sironga grounds in Nyamira county.

The campaign was organized by Health and Economic Development Strategy Organization (HEDSO) and provides a platform for the youth to showcase their talents as they receive free medical services related to sexual and gender-based violence, HIV awareness and prevention, and teenage pregnancies.

HEDSO and Zipline Ltd are spearheading the Triple Threats Campaign in the county, where they offered free HIV testing and counseling services.

According to Joy Ogingo, HEDSO’s Programs Associate, besides offering free HIV testing and counseling services, they also offer free self-testing kits.

“We offer the youth free HIV self-test kits that enable them to test themselves where they feel comfortable to do it,” she said. “We also give them free condoms and free testing of cervical cancer and other reproductive health services.”

She says that they give various forms of family planning services to their clients during the events and HPV vaccines.

“Apart from that, we also have a general clinician who can advise on any disease or any medical concerns that a client may have,” she added.

HEDSO works closely with the county governments to provide the youth with a safe space using football as a medium to bring them together.

“We do have different matches, both male and female teams, in playgrounds or stadiums near their homes, and we use what we call ‘chat corners’ to engage the youth after the matches,” she clarified.

They have peer mentors who talk to the youth about the services they offer, importance of testing and of knowing their HIV status.

“We let them decide if they want to be offered these services or not. So far, we have had positive feedback from the youth and the communities we have worked with,” she confirmed.

This, she said, has encouraged them to think of spreading their wing to different parts of the country to reduce the rate of new HIV infections and curb sexual gender-based violence.

“The youth has fully embraced our services because this is a safe place where they are served by their fellow youths. They freely talk to us and we let them ask all questions they have because we have a unique model we use to serve them,” she said.


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Gladwel Kerubo, a Zipline employee who works as HIV testing and counseling services (HTS) in Nyamira County says they offer testing services which are youth-friendly.

“Youths enjoy our services and open up to us, unlike when they visit health facilities. Most of them like self-test kits and condoms,” she said.

If any of the youths test positive for HIV, they counsel them and refer them to facilities where they can be enrolled in ARVs.

She has urged the youth to seek testing services and practice safe sex to reduce their risk of being infected with HIV.

William Ongaga, HEDSO mobilizer, says the football has provided a good platform for the youths to learn more about their reproductive health, teenage pregnancies, and sexual gender-based violence.

“We bring in football activities to attract more youths and engage them and offer them services,” he said. “We use medical experts from the county so that the young adults can get that freedom to express themselves.”

Joy Ogingo says HEDSO recognizes that the youth, young adults, and people living with HIV often encounter significant barriers to achieving their full potential, both in terms of their health and economic empowerment.

“By focusing on improving their health and wellbeing while simultaneously fostering economic empowerment, HEDSO aims to create a more equitable and inclusive society free from social injustices,” she concluded.

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