Over 120 volunteers of the Youth Klinic (YK) Moldova network on December 7 came together for a meeting to assess the work done in 2019 and to plan the activities for 2020. This year the event was held under a special theme – “Disability as a Challenge” – so as to better sensitize the adolescents and specialists to the problems faced by the persons with disabilities.
Victoria Boțan, public relations specialist of the Association “Motivație”, familiarized the volunteers with examples of challenges and success stories of young people with disabilities who found employment with the association’s assistance. She said the disability is not a disease verdict and this thing should be explained to young people who, for their part, will transmit this attitude to their children. Moreover, the young people are future employers who should not take decisions based on discriminatory stereotypes existing in society.
The special invitees of the event were photographer Vlad Andreev and young singer Tudor Cioran, who is confined to a wheelchair.
“More empathy is needed to the young people with disabilities. The current adolescents are the future and it is important that they know more about disability so that they adopt an inclusive attitude,” said Ecaterina Pitula, a volunteer of the YK network who proposed the special theme of the event.
The identification of methods by which YK volunteers can reach out to adolescents from vulnerable and risk groups in rural areas was an important point in the work agenda. The volunteers for 2020 planned actions that can be taken independently or in concert with YK specialists, aiming to raise the awareness of more young people, especially from rural areas, of a healthy lifestyle and youth-friendly health services that can be used free of charge and confidentially.
The specialists of the YK centers, who accompanied the volunteers, will play the role of introducing proposals formulated by teens into the action plan of their YK. This will be a proof of the fact that the voice of the young people and their contribution to developing youth-friendly health services count a lot.
Head of the National Resource Center on Youth-Friendly Health Services “Neovita” Galina Leshko, coordinator of the Healthy Generation Project that staged the event, told IPN that youth participation in the organization, promotion and provision of youth-friendly health services is an essential condition in the organization of such services. “The results achieved by the volunteer program of the YK network and the appreciation shown together with the handing over of the UN Human Rights Award 2019 increase our motivation to further support this very important component of a youth-friendly health center,” she stated.
The event was organized with support from the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation in the framework of the Healthy Generation Project that is implemented by the Health for Youth Association in partnership with the Ministry of Health, Labor and Social Protection.