The ‘Get up Speak out’ (GUSO) 2016-2020 for youth rights is a multinational program implemented in Indonesia, Pakistan, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Uganda and Bangladesh.
In Kenya, 10 member organizations within Kenya SRHR Alliance are currently implementing the ‘Get up Speak out’ (GUSO) 2016 -2020 Program. They include: Africa Alive!, ADS Nyanza, CSA, FHOK, GLUK-TICH, KMET, AYARHEP, Nairobits Trust, NAYA Kenya and WOFAK. The GUSO program is implemented in 6 counties with some of the poorest SRHR indicators namely Nairobi, Kisumu, Kakamega, Siaya, Homabay and Bungoma.
The problem and solution
Young people do not claim their sexual rights and their right to participation because of restrictions at community, societal, institutional and political levels. These restrictions hinder their access to comprehensive SRHR education and services that match their needs and ability to make their own informed decisions. Consequently, young people are vulnerable to among others HIV, sexual and gender based violence, unintended teenage pregnancies leading to unsafe abortion. Addressing the health and wellbeing of young people has profound educational and economic benefits in the long term. Therefore, the GUSO program will raise awareness amongst young people, especially girls and young women of their rights and will give them a voice.
The change we want
The envisioned change for GUSO program is that all young people, especially girls and young women are empowered to realize their Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) in societies that have positive attitude towards young people’s sexuality. The five expected outcomes contributing towards the anticipated change include:
- Strengthened and sustainable Alliances comprehensively address the SRHR of young people.
- Empowered young people able to voice their rights.
- Increased utilization of comprehensive SRHR information and education by all young people.Increased utilization of quality and youth-friendly SRHR services that respond to the needs and rights of all young people.
- Improved social-cultural, political and legal environment for gender-sensitive, youth-friendly SRHR.
Unique and innovative approach
The GUSO program focuses on strengthening the individual capacity of young people and at the same time improving the availability of sexual and reproductive health services and referral system to these services. In GUSO, young people and specifically girls and young women are central. Thus, they are structurally involved at all levels, from the program inception to the decision-making. Parents, care-takers, teachers and community leaders are also involved.