Many young people in the Democratic Republic of the Congo have limited knowledge of contraceptive methods and experience shame and embarrassment when they attempt to purchase these methods from health centers or pharmacies. Most young people feel more comfortable receiving information from someone their own age. Trained youth educators can be a trusted and credible source of contraceptive information for other people their age because they share similar experiences and social norms.
The Programme National de la Santé des Adolescents (PNSA), a specialized program of the Ministry of Public Health, is using a peer education strategy and considers peer education a best practice for adolescent health. PRB partnered with Youth Alliance for Reproductive Health–DRC to create an animated video to encourage the PNSA to formally recognize existing youth-led organizations in North Kivu who are working as peer educators. The video highlights the role that many youth-led organizations in North Kivu are already playing as peer educators without being formally recognized by the PNSA. The video calls on the PNSA to:
Provide youth-led organizations with certificates of registration authorizing them to provide services.
Train and monitor peer educators according to established best practices.
Ensure peer educators have the information they need to make effective referrals.
Include youth-led organizations as core partners in regular forums for decisionmakers, implementing partners, and donors.