The AHAPPY training by the AJAN team from the 23rd to 27th May 2023 at St. Paul of the Cross, Passionist Retreat Center-Golgotha Community was educative and enjoyable (Main Story). The main thing that I got from the training is how do I view myself in the world that I live in and caring for those that are infected and affected by HIV and STIs in my community.
One topic that stood out for me and brought a new perspective to me is the development of the adolescent brain. Madam Mary one of facilitators pinpointed out that our actions when we are adults are developed from the decisions we made when teenagers. Sometimes you get that the negative decisions that we make while we are young are because of peer pressure, frustrations, stress and depression that affect the brain development of a child and teenagers.
I also learnt that youth have a big role to play when it comes to caring for those affected by HIV. The only way we can take up this role is by not stigmatizing those affected by HIV but by bringing them closer because they are our brothers and sisters, bearing that I am living in one of the counties that has been highlighted as having the highest HIV infection in Kenya, then we as youth should strive to create public awareness and as young people we should abstain from pre-marital sex.
As a leader in my deanery, I am going back knowing that I have acquired knowledge and skills to teach young people on how we can be self-employed, help create awareness and educate my fellow youths on the effects of drugs and how we as youth are able to use social media to empower ourselves socially and economically. I will have a bigger role in helping the youth in my deanery tackle problems that they are facing.
On behalf of Asumbi deanery youth members, I take this opportunity to say thank you to the AJAN team. I promise to bring change to my deanery through the skills I have acquired from your AHAPPY Training of Trainers. Thank you so much and may God bless your good work.
By, Joyce samte,
From St. Arnold’s Nyalieng’a Parish, Catholic Diocese of Homabay.