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How Youth-Friendly is Your City?

By Karla Ortiz

The main objective of Colectivo 41 is to create links and collaborations with organizations in order to recognize the fundamental needs of young people. They propose solutions that allow for collective action, and in the same way, to bring all this information and action carried out to the highest levels of government.

And so Colectivo 41 of San Miguel de Allende has been working with the Desser organization of Hidalgo and ACT 2030 to carry out a series of works, the results of which were presented on April 5 at the CAISES health center with the main theme “How Friendly is Your City?”

In conjunction with institutions such as Jurisdicción Sanitaria, CASA (a youth center), IMAJSMA (a municipal youth care institute), DIF Municipal (Integral Family Development), CAISES (Essential Health Services Care Center) and IMAM (Municipal Institute for Women), Colectivo 41 surveyed 263 young people, asking them how much they know about the “youth-friendly” health program at CAISES. The survey found that

31 percent of respondents knew that the service deals with sexual health issues, while the rest believed that it dealt with issues related to sports and youth. Although most of them were aware of the program, for personal reasons, they didn’t ask more about it, or they felt embarrassed about it.

Also, two simulations were also carried out using young people to apply for this youth friendly-services, one of them, a 19-year-old girl. She requested information on planning her pregnancy. She was not denied the information; however she was subjected to a small session of questions, which was not entirely confidential, but with a door to the room open and with the presence of a third party, thus putting the patient’s trust at risk and violating the model’s rules. In the other case, a 16-year-old boy requested information on contraceptive methods for men other than condoms. He was not given that information, and the boy left the hospital with 20 condoms in hand. In both cases, the information was very ambiguous and not very inclusive.

These three organizations are also asking for respect for the LGBTI community.
Likewise, the prevention of early pregnancies to prevent further maternal deaths among adolescents in the state of Guanajuato was highlighted as a general problem. C41 put out its concern that the out-of-school population, which does not receive information like this since such information is only distributed through the schools, has the highest rate of premature pregnancies and a high rate of drug use. The presentation allowed the participating organizations to make joint decisions and to create partnerships to try and eliminate this high death rate among pregnant teens.


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