I am leading a project amplifying voices of young people through writing about their experiences during COVID-19 and sharing these online and journaling realities. We have WhatsApp platforms and google meet where we discuss challenges and provide guidance in writing. In addition, we refer young women seeking medical attention to our online help station for any issues that require mental and health services given that some need their ARVs. The online platforms provides networks at local level to support the young women. Accessibility to data and virtual support could improve engagement of young women beyond the new normal.
We have more than 15 people impacted by the work through the Still Rising Circle and they also have circles that they host in the local areas, supporting 6-15 girls in writing and health services. We need smart phones for recording their stories and some do photography that they would like to post online, but are limited by data, advanced phone to edit and deliver this work. Data is a crucial issue as most young women would like to participate and engage with the group. So funds for data, smart phones that are compatible to have applications to engage online and share more information and write would make a difference for the young women to continue writing and sharing information on health related issues and also engage each other to check up on their peers.
We have engaged with young women, published stories, documented powerful stories with women on GBV, had dialogues online on SRHR, GBV and COVID-19. This is powerful to focus on, especially at this time to maximise online support due to movement restrictions and lockdown.