12 Jun 2013 09:10
KEETMANSHOOP, 12 JUN (NAMPA) - A clinic which allows young people to speak freely and express themselves on health issues to get the correct medical and psychological help, was opened here on Wednesday.
This youth-friendly clinic, as it is being referred to, will provide family planning services, pregnancy testing, counselling, post-abortion care, screening for sexually-transmitted infections and referral services to the State hospital in this town.
It is located in the Keetmanshoop Multi-Purpose Youth Centre building, and will provide all services free of charge.
?We will prioritise putting forward all logistical requirements to ensure that the clinic operates at the speed required to meet the youths? expectations,? Minister of Youth, National Service, Sports and Culture Jerry Ekandjo said in a speech delivered by his Special Advisor Ludwig Hausiku during the official opening of the clinic.
The Youth Ministry, in partnership with the Namibia Planned Parenthood Association (Nappa), established this clinic after several requests by youth leaders in the region.
Nappa Country Director Sam Ntelamo said the main aim of the clinic is to improve the lives of young people in the region by giving them reproductive health services.
?The lack of access to youth-friendly clinics largely contributes to misfortunes facing the youth, such as teenage pregnancies, the spread of sexually-transmitted diseases (STDs) and alcohol abuse.
Thus, the only response to these challenges is to bring youth-friendly services closer to those underserved young people,? Ntelamo stated.
The deputy mayor of Keetmanshoop, Gabriel Freyer used the opportunity to call on the nurses who will be working at the clinic to create a conducive environment for young people to open up about their health problems.
?You must assist the youth without asking too many questions because with such services, we are able to reduce the HIV/AIDS prevalence, teenage pregnancies and improve the health of our young people. Only then can we guarantee that healthy youth will develop this country,? Freyer stressed.
Other speakers at the event encouraged young people in the Karas Region to make use of the facility to tap information which they could use to avoid pregnancies, HIV infections and other social problems.
Similar youth-friendly clinics are available in Katima Mulilo in the Caprivi Region; Eenhana (Ohangwena Region); Outapi (Omusati Region); and Walvis Bay (Erongo Region).