Cordaid leads a Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) program for young people (age 10 to 24) in a multi-country program called Jeune S3 (Santé, Sexualité, Sécurité). In Cameroon, our local partner Cameroon Association for Social Marketing (ACMS), implements it in the East and Extreme-North provinces in partnership with PSI-Europe. Cordaid provides technical assistance to the ACMS team for capacity building and Monitoring & Evaluation. With Jeune S3, we give young Cameroonians the possibility to make informed choices about their sexual and reproductive health and rights. And we help them to protect their SRH rights.
The Jeune S3 coordinating office is located in Yaoundé, within the premises of ACMS, our local partner. Our intervention areas are the impoverished regions of the Extreme-North (Maroua and 2 districts of Diamaré and Mayo Kani) and the East (Bertoua and 2 districts of Haut-Nyong and Kadei).
Cameroon faced insecurity and terrorism of Boko Haram in the Extreme-North province. A population of approximately one million internally displaced persons from the Extreme-North and refugees from Central-African Republic is posing a heavy burden on the Eastern region. Mass movement of people and inadequate local health services in insecure and remote areas, cause widening disparities between the French-speaking and English-speaking parts of the nation. While health indicators are improving nation-wide, the same health indicators are becoming worse in these two regions, most importantly maternal mortality.
Cordaid in Cameroon
Cordaid has been active in the health sector in Cameroon for over 20 years. Initially with support to the Diocesan Health programs and civil society organizations, but gradually shifting to health system strengthening and sexual and reproductive health in particular.
Cordaid was the first to introduce Result Based Financing (RBF) in the Diocese of Batouri in East Cameroon. We were contracted by the Ministry of Health to pilot RBF in the entire East Cameroon region, with support from the World Bank. We also supported a RBF pilot project in the Extreme-North region, implemented by APROSEN.
Inspired by our successful pilot projects, the Ministry is now expanding the RBF approach throughout the country.
In January 2016, Cordaid started a Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights program for young people (age 10 to 24) in the East and Extreme-North provinces. This is part of a multi-country program called Jeune S3, which is implemented in Eastern DRC, Central African Republic, Benin and Cameroon. The program will continue until 2020.
The Jeune S3 program helps young people (including the most marginalized and vulnerable populations – especially girls between the ages of 10 and 14) to make informed choices about their sexual and reproductive health and rights. It helps them to ensure that theirrights are respected. We mainly work with and for young people as they are the main actors of their own lives. Amongst other activities we:
develop and distribute Comprehensive Sexual Education (CSE) tools for in and out of school youth;
organize Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights radio programs by youth for youth via the ‘100% Jeune’ radio time slot;
support the ‘100% Jeune’ magazine for youth;
train young people to become leaders of their communities;
empower them to advocate for their sexual and reproductive health and rights;
develop inter-faith tools to educate and empower religious leaders with the necessary information to better support young people regarding their sexual and reproductive health;
develop and strengthen youth friendly services;
amplify the voice of young persons in national, regional and international fora;
facilitate discussions on sexual and reproductive health and rights between young people with appropriate training sessions;
promote intergenerational dialogues and safe spaces.
Cordaid aims to assist the people in the most disadvantaged provinces, notably young people and key populations. For many years, Cordaid strengthened health services through RBF, and now also by creating and improving youth-friendly services. Prevention of involuntary teenage pregnancies and HIV with comprehensive sexuality education, by making contraceptives accessible for young people and by combating child marriage, are all important to ensure young Cameroonians have a better future.
Partners and donors
Cordaid works with the Cameroon Association for Social Marketing (ACMS), which is the national organization of Populations Services International (PSI) in Jeune S3. In addition, AVLF, Renate and KhmerPad are local NGOs specialized in addressing and countering Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV) and involuntary teenage pregnancies. They provide SRH education, including hygiene pads. The program is supported by Swiss Tropical Public Health Institution. The Jeune S3 program is supported by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs.