Get Inspired by 3 Self-Care Youth Advocates
Back in April, three self-care youth advocates got together to host a podcast on the importance of self-care advocacy. Eight months later, we’re checking in with our youth leaders to explore what they’ve been up since and the role they’re playing to make universal health coverage a reality. Below, get to know more about Bea, Tihut and Richard as they continue advocating for a better world for young people everywhere.
This piece is a part of the SCTG’s 12 Days of UHC 2021 campaign.
It’s been almost two years since COVID-19 turned our world upside down. And as we’ve seen over the past two years, the burden on young people everywhere accessing health services has only increased.
If we hope to achieve universal health coverage (UHC) by 2030, the health and well-being of young people will be critical to their meaningful contribution to build and invest in health systems that serve their unique needs.
By deliberately shifting the power of health into the hands of young people, self-care offers an opportunity for youth to not only better manage their own health, but to improve national and global health outcomes and set up the health system to effectively and efficiently achieve UHC.
And with young people’s voices leading the way, we can unlock innovative new solutions that can accelerate progress to better meet the needs of young people. As we celebrate UHC Day this year, get to know Bea, Richard and Tihut – youth advocates who we’re currently inspired by – as they share why they believe in the untapped potential of self-care practices and interventions for young people to take charge of their own health in ways never before possible.
To further support these youth champions on their advocacy journey, explore their recommendations for integrating self-care into policies and programming here.
Content Development and Knowledge Management Officer, Y-ACT Youth In Action
Name: Beatrice Okech
Residence: Nairobi, Kenya
Education: Masters in Project Planning & Management
App you can’t live without: Spotify
Dream dinner guest: Adele
“For young people to make informed decisions on their sexual and reproductive health, they need access to accurate, reliable and youth-friendly sexual and reproductive health information. My self-care advocacy work revolves around bridging the access gap to youth-friendly services and information to allow youth — especially young women — to take charge of their health.”
Youth Officer, Young Expert: Tech4Health
Name: Richard Dzikunu
Education: Masters in Development Communications and Digital Communications Leadership
App you can’t live without: The weather app… you need that in Brussels!
Dream dinner guest: The Obamas
“Digital self-care interventions, when designed well, have the potential to increase people’s self-awareness of their health needs and help individuals to self-manage their own health conditions. My work involves advocating to ensure that such digital care interventions are safe and protect the users from harm.”
Project Advisor DMPA-SC for self-inject, PSI Ethiopia
Name: Tihut Mulugeta
Residence: Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Education: Masters of Public Health
App you can’t live without: Telegram
Dream dinner guest: Oprah Winfrey
“As a project advisor for the DMPA-SC pilot project in Ethiopia, I have been engaged in advocacy activities promoting the idea of self-care and DMPA-SC to the Ministry of Health and other important stakeholders including with my fellow coworkers at PSI. Additionally, I have been engaged in promoting the importance of self-care in reaching UHC through blogs, newsletters, podcasts and more.”
To achieve a world where everyone has access to care, we can’t afford to ignore youth voices. Interested in more self-care youth advocacy?
Join our Youth Workstream!
Whether you’re new to the self-care conversation or have been a self-care trailblazer member since our inception, we want to continue elevating your voice! Become a part of the SCTG’s Youth Workstream and lead the charge as we incorporate youth focused needs into our global advocacy priorities — ensuring that young people like you have the power to take control of your healthcare. If you’re interested in joining, send an email to [email protected]
Listen to our youth leaders speak on their priorities in our podcast “Self-Care: For Youth, By Youth”.