This was not an ordinary day at Purpose Rwanda Offices, it was a special day pursuant to the weight the organization accorded to the day. Under the International Theme: “Better The Balance, Better The World”, two discussion questions were used as significant tools to enable members in attendance to reflect on what Purpose Rwanda as a capacity building and psychosocial NGO can offer in promoting the required balance in accordance to the international theme. The questions read as follow: firstly, In what ways can Purpose Rwanda contribute through its mission in adding value to what the government does in relation to continuously promoting gender balance in Rwanda? Secondly, Teenage pregnancy cases can be reduced. What should Propose Rwanda do more in order to create a wider impact in regard to prevention of the unwanted pregnancies as well as providing counseling services to the affected?
Purpose Rwanda recognizes the immense effort Government of Rwanda has invested towards promoting balance between men and women in all spheres of life especially pertaining to socio-economic and political issues. The policies, laws and practices in place speak loudly and clearly in every day’s aspects of the country. Purpose Rwanda commits itself in making a contribution in sustaining the gains attained in Rwanda through Purpose Development and support as well as inculcating the ideals and values of positive addiction free living among the youth. For the youth to add more value to the foundation set by the government over the past 25 years since the heinous genocide committed against the Tutsi in 1994, continuous direction, informing and mentorship to the youth is crucial. Purpose Rwanda packages its role in shaping the growth and development of the youths in Rwanda through the implementation of its vision “to create Purposeful, Positive and Addiction Free citizens towards enhancing self-sustainability and socio-economic transformation in Rwanda”
The stark fact is, increased income per capita, increased savings, increase in investment levels, improvement in social services, development of technology and innovations, expansion of employment opportunities, increase in direct foreign investments, development of infrastructure, improvement of life expectancy, better gain from globalization and regionalism (Pan-Africanism) among others is what all nations glamour to achieve. Our youth need capacity and psycho-social enrichment. These are fundamental and valuable requirements that support their involvement in sustaining the current, massive and unwavering socio-economic transformation in the country and all the related achievements. The central message is, the youths should adhere to correct values rooted in the culture and homegrown ideals of the nation. In this way, the opportunities towards promoting balance between women and men will become the creed of Rwanda in all generations and the World.
The ideas expressed during the discussions on the two questions can be summarized in common points as follow: there is need to widen the scope of training to cater for a wide range of areas and population, parental involvement in shaping the growth of the youth through sex education. This gives an opportunity for the youths to acknowledge sex in marriage is a right but that premarital sex is not a human right, it is an offense either. The importance of assessment of the cases and causes of teenage pregnancies, awareness about the development of girls and how she should protect herself from exploiters, plays, and songs that communicate values on gender balance as well as abstinence, to use positive peers, values of balance and healthy growth and behaviors of boys and girls be emphasized. To reach to parents is an essential segment and through this, parents are cautioned that they can either positively or negatively impact on the growth of their children due to their own ways of life. That there is a need for teamwork spirit and partnerships so as to eliminate risk factors. There is also the need for education and follow-ups, advocacy to review or strengthen laws and policies, career guidance at all levels. Furthermore, it is also pertinent to show that gender balance is possible and valuable, cultures that undermine women should be transformed, there is need to conduct seminars as this may broaden ways for people to speak and express various ideas to enhance gender balance as well as prevention of teenage pregnancies. This would help in addressing contentious issues. The use of social media to disseminate important ideas about gender balance and prevention of teenage pregnancies. Social media is easily accessed by all categories of age brackets, therefore, a large portion of the country’s population will have access to such ideas.
Gender balance is a significant means to effectively preserve and utilize the world’s resources to the benefit of nations and the world community at large. Prevention of teenage pregnancy resonates with the prospects of human development for sustainable development. Teenage pregnancy is a menace that should not be tolerated because it’s against morals and it is wicked.