ROOTS host Girls Wellness Fair in Bindura
October 29, 2018
Real Open Opportunities for Transformation Support (ROOTS) hosted a Girls Wellness Fair in Bindura last Friday at Maizelands Secondary School in Bindura. ROOTS has noted with concern that child marriages are still occurring in the target area and one of the main drivers being barriers to the access to SRHR information. For many of young, the onset of adolescence brings not only changes to their bodies but also new vulnerabilities to human rights abuses, particularly in the arenas of sexuality, marriage and childbearing. Girls are coerced into unwanted sex or marriage, putting them at risk of unwanted pregnancies, unsafe abortions, sexually transmitted infections (STIs) including HIV, and dangerous childbirth. Within this background, the fair focused on cancer awareness, reproductive health and early child marriages. While the fair was aimed at girls, boys were also welcome to the event to learn about the health issues that affect everyone.
October is Cancer Awareness month and ROOTS invited the National AIDS Council (NAC) to facilitate and present on Cancer and HIV. NAC facilitators were also available to answer questions related to these health issues.
Other presentations on the day were by ROOTS facilitators and they covered adolescent health issues as well as early child marriages.
Lesley Blessed Chaitezvi a form 3 student said “Today was good because we learnt about breast cancer and other types of cancers their symptoms and how to detect them. I also learnt that it is important to prioritise education at this time in our lives. I think future programs should also focus a lot on the issue of early child marriages as this is a big issue “.
Vanity Madzivanzira a male form 3 student said “I learnt a lot about cancer and I feel I can now advise people about the importance of screening and early detection. The information was new to me, I knew cancer was a disease that affected people but I did not know there were different types of cancer. Today was good because of the information we got which will be useful in life.”
Maizelands Secondary deputy headmaster Mr Peter Bowora said the day had been successful and he was thankful to all the partners who had taken part. The information shared by the partners was on cancer awareness, reproductive health, and early child marriages.
“The program helped a lot especially since some families no longer have the aunts who would teach the children about these issues. Today only non-exam classes the form 1 to form 3 students made it, I think if such programs are done in the first term form 4s can also participate as there will be no exam pressure on them.” Bowora said.
ROOTS is a non profit organization working towards the promotion of economic and social justice among young people in peri-urban, rural, and mining communities. The organization’s programming is underpinned by the Human Rights Based Approach to individual and collective development combining soft skills and hard skills as a sustainable development program for women and youth as well as Internally Displaced Populations (IDPs) in rural, mining and peri-urban communities.