The International Women’s Day is celebrated on March 8th to honor and celebrate women. This year’s theme was ‘DigitALL’: Technology and Innovation for Gender Equality. TAHI was honored to organize and co-host a Twitter space with the youth cluster of Girls Not Brides Uganda to celebrate women, especially girls and young women. The Twitter theme was “Creating Safety Nets for Girls Against Teenage Pregnancy and Child Marriage.”

Speakers: The following were the speakers at the event:

  • Joyce Nakato, Deputy Executive Director, Uganda Youth and Adolescent Health Forum-UYAHF
  • Harriet Kamashanyu, Executive Director, Rhythm of Life
  • Hope Nankunda, Executive Director, Raising Teenagers Uganda and Coordinator for Girls Not Brides Uganda Central Region
  • Christian Katekaine, Programs Coordinator, Development for Rural Areas

The Discussion was steered and moderated by our Programs and Advocacy Associate, Victoria Nattabi.

Hope Nankunda discussed the effective strategies to end child marriage and teenage pregnancy, emphasizing the need for partnerships and the power of collaboration to maximize impact. She also suggested that civil society organizations focus on their strengths for lasting impact and involve religious and cultural leaders, who command respect and influence in society.

Harriet highlighted the importance of utilizing legal frameworks such as the Constitution and the National Strategy to end teenage pregnancy and child marriage to guide programming and protection of girls.

She noted that change begins with individuals and urged the entire community to protect girls against teenage pregnancy and child marriage. She also highlighted the need to use commitments made by duty bearers to hold them accountable.

Joyce Nakato discussed the role of parents in creating awareness about the importance of educating girls and empowering them with information about their rights. She also emphasized the use of positive role models and the need to create spaces in communities for girls to learn and enhance their capabilities.

Joyce shared the different platforms at UYAHF that are used to reach out to the girls and boys, such as a toll free line called ‘Suubi’ and a mobile app, both providing SRHR information and counseling services for the young people to access at any time. She also mentioned the UYAHF Youth Hub, where young people meet to share and learn different SRHR topics and talk to counselors. 

The main emphasis was put on the need to use the peer-to-peer model, as it can help in breaking the stigma surrounding SRHR.–

Christian Katekaine stressed the importance of utilizing role models from similar social and economic backgrounds as this would facilitate a stronger connection between them and the girls, making the message considerably important and more impactful and effective. She further suggested the need to use both mainstream media and social media for campaigns to educate and share information with girls.

Christian also suggested using posters and talking compounds in schools to spread messages that stick in the minds of girls and boys.

The speakers emphasized the importance of sensitization and working with survivors of child marriage and teenage pregnancy, who can strongly talk to girls with first-hand information. Additionally, they highlighted the use of technology and innovation to bridge the gap between service providers and young people.

The Twitter space highlighted important strategies to end child marriage and teenage pregnancy, emphasizing the need for partnerships, legal frameworks, positive role models, and empowering girls with information about their rights. The use of technology and innovation was also emphasized to bridge the gap between service providers and young people.

The link to the recording can be found here; https://twitter.com/i/spaces/1MYxNgAdNpwKw