This Monday morning in Addis Ababa, First Lady Jeannette Kagame attended the 24th Ordinary General Assembly of the Organisation of African First Ladies for Development advocating for prevention and treatment of HIV/AIDS (OAFLAD), on the margins of the 33rd African Union Summit, themed: “Gender Equality and Women Empowerment; A Pathway to the Africa We Want”.
First Lady Jeannette Kagame said that parent-child communication, limited access to Adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health (ASRH) information and services, are some of the key factor hindering efforts delivering the African Union development agenda.
“How comfortable can we be, knowing that in East and Southern Africa, nearly one in five adolescent girls are getting pregnant? We must not rest as long as in Sub-Saharan Africa, at least one third, of early pregnancies are unplanned,” Mrs Kagame said.
The International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD), held in Cairo, in 1994, brought about a shift; calling all nations to enforce women and girls’ sexual reproductive rights.
First Lady Jeannette Kagame in her intervention shared key recommendations, based on Rwanda's experience.
“Policy and legal reforms addressing age of marriage, consent to sexual activities and access to Sexual and Reproductive Health information and services should be treated as a matter of urgency,” Mrs Kagame said.
She added, “Young people’s participation, in the planning and delivery of Sexual and Reproductive Health and rights services and information, at all levels, should be promoted, and, strengthening national and global partnerships, with committed partners should be prioritised,”
Rwanda in its commitment, to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, by the year 2030, declared Adolescent Sexual Reproductive Health, a national priority, for our socio-economic development.
Through a multi-sectoral response, Rwanda with the support of development partners, invested in designing and implementing regional commitments, youth-friendly policies, legal and institutional frameworks, to preserve Sexual and Reproductive Health rights.
“To complement the efforts of the Government of Rwanda, Imbuto Foundation, through the Adolescent and Youth Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights project is pairing schools and communities with healthcare centres, to provide Sexual Reproductive Health knowledge and youth-friendly services,” First Lady said of the Imbuto Foundation she founded.
Through the Baho Neza Project, Rwanda is carrying out nationwide awareness campaigns on Sexual Reproductive Health, Family Planning, and the prevention of teenage pregnancy - while disseminating manuals, to facilitate Parent-Adolescent Communication.
“Through iaccelerator programme, in partnership with UNFPA, we are encouraging youth to become agents of change, by providing innovative and business-led solutions, to Sexual Reproductive Health challenges – with this year’s challenge surrounding teenage pregnancy,” Mrs Kagame added.
First Lady also shared that through the First Time Young Mothers programme, Rwanda supports supporting young mothers aged 10 to 19, from vulnerable backgrounds, to access maternal and newborn health services, counselling and family reintegration, as they are often confronted with stigma.
First Lady Jeannette Kagame concluded her intervention by urging fellow First Ladies to further use the OAFLAD platform and most importantly, to learn from each other’s best practices to uplift their communities.
Meanwhile, on Sunday, Mrs Kagame joined fellow OAFLA members from Angola, Eswatini, Central Africa Republic, Tchad, Comoros, DR Congo, Ghana, Mali, Niger, Sierra Leone and Sudan, for the 24th General Assembly closed session.
First Lady Jeannette Kagame is in Addis Abeba Ethiopia where she arrived this Sunday from the United States of America, where she had attended the 68th US annual National Prayer Breakfast.
Urubyiruko ruri muri FPR Inkotanyi rwasabwe kwiga umuco nyarwanda no kurangwa n’indangagaciro
Nov 28, 2021 Soma inkuru