Report on Phase 2 of the Youth Peer Health Educator Project

Phase 1 Youth Peer Health Educators returning home from evaluation meeting in Njombe

The second phase of the implementation of the Youth Peer Health Educator (YPHE) project is completed. Phase 3 will evaluate the impact on the awareness and knowledge of HIV and reproductive health issues among the first group of YPHEs trained in phase 1 and will extend training to three more primary schools in the Njombe area.

George Sanga, YPHE project consultant and trainer, has provided the following report on the completion of phase 2:

YPHE TRANING REPORT - KNOWLEDGE, PRACTICE AND ATTITUDE (KAP) NA HIV/AIDS, REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH NA GENDER VIOLENCE PROVIDED TO PUPILS FROM PRIMARY SCHOOLS IN NJOMBE, TANZANIA.

16th June 2012

INTRODUCTION:
Education about HIV/AIDS, reproductive health and gender violence has been very helpful in Tanzanian communities. For a long time this education has been provided to only elders may be because of the perception that young boys and girls especially those from primary schools knows nothing about these issues. And they are not involved. CHAKUNIMU a Non Governmental Organization that is operating in Njombe areas of Tanzania fighting against HIV/AIDS in collaboration with TANWAT hospital and Mc Gill University school of nursing decided to work together researching on the KAP (Knowledge, Practice and Attitude) on HIV/AIDS in 2010.

The research study was done by a student nurse from Mc Gill, Ryan Lomenda, as supervised by TANWAT HIV/AIDS Coordinator Bathseba Liduke, RN and Madeleine Buck RN, M.Sc. (A), The research study did show that the students were owning little and wrong Knowledge on these mentioned issues. This was noted as one of the reasons to why HIV/AIDS war is not successful. A limited number of schools that was picked to be as case study were those under CHAKUNIMU's working area:

  • Nyumbanitu Primary school
  • Mlevela Primary school
  • Utelewe Primary school
  • Ulembwe Primary school
  • Imalinyi Primary school and
  • Maheve Primary school.

YOUNG BOYS AND GIRLS NEED TO BE GIVEN RIGHT EDUCATION ON HIV/AIDS AND BEING TRAINED AS PEER HEALTH EDUCATORS.
This was a voice heard from CHAKUNIMU PHE's and all other community members after the research study.

PROJECT IMPLEMENTATION: PHASE I. (2010)

Selected schools were: Nyumbanitu na Mlevela primary schools.

The project coordinator was Vesna Papuga a student from Mc Gill University In Collaboration with BathsebaLiduke, CHAKUNIMU and Highlands Hope..

Twenty students in total (ten from each school) and four teachers (Two fromeach school) were given education and trained to be Peer health educators working in their schools and the community as whole. The project had great impact and was successful.

The success from this first phase encouraged the proceeding of the next phase that had to include the schools left over in another phase II, Jan - June 2012.

PROJECT IMPLEMENTATION: PHASE II. (Jan - June 2012)

CHAKUNIMU in collaboration with Mc Gill University school of nursing and Highlands hope umbrella conducted the project phase as follows:

  • Project sponsors: Mc Gill University - Canada.
  • Implementers: CHAKUNIMU
  • Accountability: Kibena Women Association (KWA)
  • Coordinator: Highlands hope Education consultant (Mwl. George Sanga)
  • Selected schools: Maheve and Itulike primary schools.

Twenty students (ten from each school) were selected by being voted by their fellow students and started to be trained. The training was conducted in two centers by exchanging from May to June 16. Two days of every week (Wednesday and Saturday) were used for training in order to avoid disturbing the schools' class schedules.

Before the training classes, students were tested to determine their Knowledge, Attitude and Practice (KAP) on HIV/AIDS and they scored 35%. The same kind of test was provided at the end of training and students scored 80%. As students were prepared to be Peer health educators they were to be tested practically, the first best score was 98% and the last one scored (88%).

Five students out of twenty who started the training failed to complete due to different reasons such as poor attendance which lead the to miss some important classes. (3 from Itulike and 2 from Maheve). This was one of the challenges. Only 15 students were awarded certificates and their four teachers (Two from each school) as they did a wonderful job cooperating with facilitators during the training. Oscar Kilasi, a volunteer from Kibena was also awarded a certificate of appreciation.

Apart from conducted classes, students and their teachers after being well educated on the importance of HIV testing they were ready to get tested. Betty Liduke, a coordinator of HIV/AIDS department at TANWAT hospital conducted the testing exercise to those who were ready. She also trained the young how to read the HIV test results. Students are now able to explain and convince their peer on the importance of testing and how easy it is.

Other schools that are left out from those that were researched are Imalinyi, Ulembwe and Utelewe. These will be focused on the 3rd phase of this project before extending the project to many other schools. We would like to invite the Government to support these efforts as we have already started to see how the project is helpful to our communities.

APPRECIATION:
We express our great thanks to all parents who willingly allowed their children to attend the training, Principals from the two schools for the maximum cooperation we experienced from them including the good teachers they gave us to support the training and guide students. We are also so thankful to Njombe district council the Director and department of Education for their cooperation shown in the project.

Lastly we express our thanks to Highlands hope board under Bethseba B. Liduke the HHU Director and Thomas Mvulla the HHU General secretary with great support from Highlands hope friends Royal Orr and Madeline Buck of Mc Gill University the school of nursing. We have also worked closely with Kibena Women Association KWA.

We hope the Government and other will support this project to be to finish the other schools left in Njombe area and Tanzania as whole.

TANZANIA WITHOUT HIV/AIDS IS POSSIBLE. Let us together educate the young for NATIONAL DEVELOPMENT.

Prepared by:
GEORGE MENSON SANGA
(Education Consultant - YPHE)
HIGHLANDS HOPE UMBRELLA