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Ongoing projects :: Adolescents
Adolescents and young people

IstanbulAdolescents and young people

Health and education of young people are among the main priorities of BFPA from the very beginning. The main directions of work connected with adolescents include health and sexuality education, peer education, health prevention and planning and organizing of special youth events. Healthy life style, sexual and reproductive health, HIV and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs), drug abuse and addictions, trafficking for sexual exploitation, contraception, hygiene and puberty are only part of the topics on which young people receive information and can discuss with our team. BFPA’s approach to working with young people includes equal participation and youth-adult partnership. 
In the last years youth groups of BFPA in Stara Zagora, Ruse, Pleven, Plovdiv and Sofia are working actively in the field of peer education, promotional special events and elaboration of youth friendly info and video materials. The principles of youth-adult partnership are respected and followed by all BFPA staff and volunteers and young people have wide autonomy – decisions about conducting different events and funds usage are made within the group, which pays off with their increased level of effectiveness and creativity.

UN New YorkYoung people at risk

In 2000 BFPA started working on a project financed by the PHARE-ACCESS programme of EU in six Juvenile Detention Centers (JDC) and seven Social Pedagogical Centers (SPC). The project activities included the organizing and holding of a series of educational modules in the area of sexual and reproductive health for adolescents in these institutions. Coming up with adequate information materials for the target auditorium was also an important part of the activities.This project lasted for 2 years (until 2002) but due to the needs of the adolescents in these institutions BFPA applied for funding for the next two years through the International Planned Parenthood Federation. In 2005, from the state budget of the Republic of Bulgaria, BFPA received the opportunity to work with the teachers and staff at the JDCs and SPCs by training them for mentors on the topics of sexual and reproductive health, as the Association provided suitable information materials. In 2006-2008 BFPA ensured funding for medical screenings in six SPCs their focus being sexually transmitted diseases. Starting at the end of 2008 and all through 2009 the BFPA worked with SPC staff for providing the young people with suitable medical services. Nowadays in the period 2013-2018 as part of the project “The art to inform” funded by the OAK foundation BFPA is restoring the work with the remaining 4 JDCs and 2 SPCs in the process of deinstitutionalization with main goal prevention of sexual exploitation and sexual abuse towards young people there.
Another group with which BFPA has experience in working on projects in the area of sexual and reproductive health are the of hearing and visually impaired young people. The first project in this field was realized with the support of Cooperating Netherlands Foundations for Central and Eastern Europe and included the training of trainers among the target groups. As part of this project BFPA published the first of its kind informational material in Braille (for visually impaired or blind adolescents) containing information about contraception, HIV and sexually transmitted diseases. In 2014 as part of the project KEEP ME SAFE the association conducted national-wide a series of interactive trainings for specialists working with YPLD (young people with learning disabilities) in the field of health education and prevention of sexual abuse. Under another project funded by the Rutgers foundation, BFPA conducted a series of interactive trainings for specialists working with young people with physical disabilities and chronic diseases.    
In 2011 BFPA joined a team funded and led by UNICEF - Bulgaria and started the implementation of a big project on prevention of abandonment of cгildren in Shumen region. Other partners in the project were Ethnic Minorities Health Problems Foundation (EMHPF), ohter key Bulgarian NGOs and the municipalities of Shumen, Varbitza, Veliki Preslav and Novi Pazar. The component that is under the direct reponsibility of BFPA  is connected with SRH services programme and with multiple trainings in the field of health and sexuality education, training of trainers, health prevention, counselling and working in multiethnic environment. Activities under this project were carried out throughout the period 2011 - 2014.
Two of BFPA's main projects for 2016-2017  with a focus on youth still are "Mission possible"  - provision of SRH services for young people from vulnerable communities in 14 populated areas, and "Acessible health services" - improving maternal and child health in Roma communities in Sofia. At the same time key partnership with organizations focusing their activities towards young people as our partners form the platform Loveguide.bg, Red Cross youth and the Re-act association is actively ongoing

For 2022 like in previous years BFPA continues its work with the youth groups in the four locations where are functioning the branches of the organization as well as in another locations with the support of our partner networks and the Medical Students Associations. We will continue our work with vulnerable young people in various types of institutions – boarding schools, foster care units as well as with young Roma that have difficult access to health care and education. We count on the active participation of our young volunteers and we hope 2022 will be a good year for health education from legislative point of view, as well as for the institutionalizing of the preparation of health and sexuality education high school teachers. 2019 was the year in which we trained for a third consecutive year the volunteers of Red Cross Youth in ToT for health and sexuality education. We started, in partnership with Sofia municipality, MoH and Red Cross a Sofia Academy for peer educators in the field  of CSE and  the first peers from 5 schools were certified at the end of the scholar year in June 2019. In 2020 we can proudly say that this became an annual activity for schools in the capital city.

In 2021 BFPA produced 5 short videos “And thank you for the fish” on the life and personalities of five young adults, former volunteers and peer educators of BFPA. We oriented part of BFPA youth related activities towards audiovisual materials elaboration – short animated educational videos on different topics, related with health and sexuality education and health literacy, uploaded to BFPA You Tube channel

Below are enumerated the brand new accents in our work in 2022:

-The Covid -19 pandemic for a second year is not giving the opportunity to hold live trainings and gatherings in the cold months. So, the Sofia Academy for peer educators in the field of CSE, active in the last two years was upgraded in 2021 to Academy for Visionaries. The Academy goes on in 2022 - BFPA team in partnership with the Sport and Youth Directorate of Sofia Municipality is mentoring young people in the division “Civic and Health Education. Media Literacy”

- New, modern vision of our website and ongoing info upgrade

- Mapping of the youth groups and young volunteers we work with national-wide

- Online counseling of parents on how to communicate with their children on sensitive topics related with puberty and growing up with starting point the finalized at the end of 2018 short animated video on puberty, 2 short animations from  2021 - for the need of health education and on the ways of infections to human body, as well as the other informational products of the organization.

- stimulating youth creativity and implementing youth ideas for public participation and health campaigns

- for a second year - youth led Instagram profile of BFPA in Instagram







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Latest news

Presentation of the results of a regional study and recommendations for SRH services in the European Parliament - project "Youth Voices, Youth Choices"

Brussels, October 26, 2022

In the last months of 2022 the partners of the YVYC project, together with experts and young people, developed recommendations for regional policy recommendations for improvement of health and social systems and SRHR services for young people after the Covid 19 pandemic.
The recommendations are targeting decision-makers at international and national institutions.  They were presented in the European Parliament on October 26, 2022 by young advocates and experts, with the support of MEP Fred Matic. Three BFPA representatives - Victoria Nikolova, Venelin Stoychev and Pavlina Filipova participated in the EP meeting.

 
Training within the framework of the youth-led campaign in the city of Dupnitsa - "Check in advance, don't trust!" The truth stories from the Roma neighborhood"

Dupnitsa, October 15-16, 2022

On October 15th  and 16th 2022 a training "Check in advance, don't trust!" was held on topics how to identify fake news. Participants, including Roma youth (14 and 18 years old),  enriched their knowledge about media and the impact of false information on health services. The training included also photovoice method and  interesting photography techniques. Young people will practice those skills in the upcoming campaign activities.

 
Youth-led campaign "Health Alarm Clock" in Breznik

Breznik, October 11, 2022

On October 11, 2022, the first of a series of health education information meetings was held with 35 students from 11th and 12th grades of "Vasil Levski" school in Breznik. The event is part of the campaign "Health Alarm Clock" under the "YOUTH VOICES, YOUTH CHOICES" project of BFPA, financed by the” MSD for Mothers” program and organized by the Regional Youth Raise Center with the partnership of the Bulgarian Family Planning and Sexual Health Association (BFPA), Breznik Municipality and the Local Commission for Combating Anti-Social Behavior of Minors.

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Ongoing projects :: Adolescents