|Chibuzor Aguwa speaking to the corps members during the OT seminar|
The National Reproductive health, HIV/AIDS prevention and care project through the NYSC training exercise for the Batch B stream 1 corps members who camped at the NYSC orientation camp in Wannune, Tarka LGA of Benue state took place from the 2nd to the 8th of November 2015. The six day activities was indeed a commemorable one because lots of useful information was disseminated to the various participants and of course it was a pleasure for myself to have an opportunity for me in the person of Chibuzor Aguwa to facilitate and speak on issues of interest (as related to reproductive health/HIV/AIDS) and also encourage young people to adopt a behavioural change so as to checkmate the spread of this reproductive health menace.
THE ORIENTATION TRAINING (OT) SEMINAR
It was a massive crowd on the day of the Orientation training (OT), a total of 2,335 corps members was present the venue comprising of 1,260 males and 1,095 females. The lecture hall was filled up with some participants even standing as a result of lack of chairs that can accommodate them all. A total of 13 NYSC officials was also present at the high table.
The Orientation training seminar started by 1:00PM after a lecture on Tiv culture, the OT seminar was flagged off by the Deputy Camp Director who represented the State Coordinator. In his opening speech the Project Manager Mr. Dickson Ajah highlighted the ravaging effect of HIV/AIDS on the population especially the youth and encouraged corps members to participate actively in the OT and volunteer to be trained as peer educator trainers and also to know their HIV status because he believes that early diagnosis in any disease or virus is very important for timely treatment and management. Other key NYSC officials in attendance were the Head of lectures , Head of Sanitation, HIV/AIDS M&E officer, Deputy Camp Director, Head of Socials, Information Officer I etc. A total number of 13 NYSC officials participated, they consist of 5 females and 8 males. 5 other persons participated and made up of invited guest and the Tiv Culture speaker. The OT technical session followed immediately after the Tiv culture lectures with a presentation on the overview of Adolescent Reproductive Health and HIV&AIDS situation in Nigeria which was presented by the team leader. This was followed closely with other Sessions which were presented in sequence. The orientation seminar provided corps members with an opportunity to increase knowledge and clear some of the myths and misconception surrounding HIV&AIDS through the questioning and answer session. The orientation seminar came to a close by 2PM. 200 Volunteered corps members were mobilized for the 6-days peer education training.
THE 6 DAYS MASTER TRAINING EXERCISE FOR VOLUNTEER PEER EDUCATOR TRAINERS (PETs)
|Volunteer corps members writing their post test assessment|
The six days training for the volunteers was intense, educative and indeed fun because the volunteers were properly trained, mentored in order to graduate only those that are deemed fit for the task ahead of them. The PETs master training workshop was successful. Volunteered corps members exhibited high participation and commitment throughout the training session as evidenced in their post-test and micro presentation results. The enabling environment and support received from the NYSC and other camp officers also contributed greatly to the attainment of the workshop goal and objectives. A total of 200 persons volunteered for the training, 96 out this number completed the training, only 50 were graduated. All the graduated PETs were provided with materials such as training manuals, fez caps, and hand bands.
The time available for the 6-day peer education training was however inadequate due to the competing demand of the skills acquisition activities and other compulsory lectures e.g. security lectures, SAED (Skill acquisition and educational development) etc which commenced from 9.00 am to 1.00pm and is made mandatory for all corps members. However training adopted the strategy of starting training session by 6:00am to recover the lost time. This strategy not withstanding was very stressful and demanding on trainers.
A small graduation ceremony was organized for graduating PETs to mark the end the 6-day peer education training course in camp. The graduating PETs took an oath to discharge their duties with great commitment; the exercise was conducted by the state coordinator who was represented by the project manager, Mr Dickson Ajah. He encouraged the graduating PETS to ensure the knowledge gain during the 6- day is transferred to PEs in schools and other community members in places of their primary assignment and their host communities.
|Group photograph with the graduated PETs, having myself, Mr Dickson Ajah (the NYSC project manager) and Bem Alugh (a co-facilitator)|
|Myself with some of the graduated PETs|
COMMENDATIONWe want to commend the Director CDS and the Project Team in NDHQ for their leadership in this difficult phase that this noble project is going through. We are also very appreciative of Mrs Akuso, the Assistant Director from the Directorate Office who came for supportive supervision