Aahung’s Life Skills Based Education (LSBE) Program is a comprehensive curriculum, which introduces critical reproductive health information and management skills in line with the emerging capacity of the young person.
In an environment where children and adolescents are not provided with timely information regarding their body, health and well being, Aahung’s LSBE program supports young people in accessing such information in a safe environment.
Starting from the early primary school years, Aahung’s programs focus on body protection and child sexual abuse (CSA) prevention by teaching children the power of “NO” and critical skills in communicating discomfort and mistreatment. Building on this momentum, content on the changing body and key skills such as communication, negotiation and conflict resolution are introduced to students in their middle school years. In addition, issues such as harassment and abuse are also discussed as many students, particularly girls, start to face sexual violence during their adolescent years. As young people become more mature in their thinking, reproductive health topics such as: HIV / AIDS, peer pressure, rights within the nikah nama, positive health seeking behaviours and the importance of planning a family are introduced and explored. Throughout, a great deal of emphasis is given to exploring issues of gender and power as these are key concepts which determine from an early age, reproductive health outcomes.
The LSBE program operates predominantly through school systems in which administrative decision makers, teachers and the school community, including parents, are sensitized on the need for LSBE for promoting the well being of young people. Selected teachers are intensively trained on participatory and learner-centered methodology and their knowledge on reproductive health is greatly advanced to allow them to confidently teach the LSBE curriculum in their classrooms. Aahung also offers teachers advanced training skills, such as counseling, to support them in creating an enabling environment in their schools where young people feel empowered to communicate and ask for help when needed.
Aahung also engages with youth in the community by partnering with community-based organizations, vocational training centers and peer education programs. Through such initiatives, Aahung spreads awareness about critical reproductive rights issues such as early age marriages and the health consequences of early age pregnancies and rapid-repeat pregnancies. Often, such community-based initiatives are also tied to awareness raising activities such as theater performances, melas and mobile cinema campaigns.