A two-day national workshop for youth-serving non-governmental organizations (NGOs) convened by Girls’ Power Initiative (GPI) took place in Calabar from 16th to 19th February 1997.
The workshop deliberated on the strategic objectives and actions recommended in the platforms for Acton (PFA) of the International Conference on Population and Development and the Fourth World Conference on Women (FWCW), on adolescent and the girl child.
It was observed that although Nigeria participated actively in the two conferences, there are still major political, socio-economic and cultural barriers that impede the implementation of the provisions of the PFAs by governments, NGOs and individuals.
Participants at the workshop, therefore recommended as follows:
- That as a matter of urgency, the government should introduce economic measures to reduce poverty and guarantee food, security and quality education for adolescents. This will go a long way to reduce the vulnerability of adolescents to crime and sexual violence.
- That the current draft policy on adolescents should be reviewed by a broad spectrum of relevant organizations working with adolescents and adopted thereafter for implantation.
- That service providers should be retrained and equipped to render quality adolescent-friendly healthcare.
- That strong action should be taken against sexual violence, in particular, the increasing incidence of rape of adolescent girls and children. To facilitate this, the law and procedures for the prosecution of the offenders in cases of sexual abuse should be reviewed.
Participants called on government to provide an enabling environment for youth-serving NGOs to carry out their activities. The participating NGOs also committed themselves to concrete plan of action for collaborating for the promotion of adolescent health and well-being.