YONECO joined the Malawi government and the rest of the country in commemorating the World Population Day (WPD)at a national event that was held at Michongwe Primary School ground in Machinga district.
In his key note address, the Minister of Health who was also the Guest of Honour, Honourable Atupele Muluzi told the Malawi nation that family planning is the responsibility of both men and women.
Honourable Muluzi stated that most people in Malawi look at family planning as the sole responsibility of women. He further added that it is unfortunate that this is the case despite the fact that both men and their wives shoulder the burden of supporting big families.
He further urged all Malawians to consider having small family sizes which he said is the cornerstone to the well-being of all people in the family and a catalyst for the development of the country.
YONECO showcased its work in Sexual Reproductive Health in its pavilion that was erected at the venue. Among the interventions which YONECO showcased include the following; provision of SRHR Services in Drop in Centres, SRHR Counselling through Toll Free Helpline, sensitization on SRH through theatre and YONECO FM radio Station.
Among other things, YONECO also engaged Sar Patricks and Blaze to work on a theme song for this year’s commemoration of the World Population Day. The song enjoyed airplay on YFM and other radio stations and it was performed live at the function. Other activities that spiced up the event include plays and traditional dances by various groups including, Skeffa Chomoto as well as YONECO’s Youth Ambassadors; Blaze and Sar Patricks. The proceedings were also broadcast live by YONECO FM.
YONECO Cultural Troupe was also there and the group showcased how they use theatre to raise awareness on various socioeconomic issues including family planning and sexual reproductive health. On the list was also YONECO Children’s Band that performed alongside Skeffa Chimoto, and Health Education Band.
The function was graced by the presence of various prominent individuals including Paramount Chief Kawinga; Machinga District Council Chairperson, Margaret Uladi; the Executive Director for YONECO, Mac Bain Mkandawire; UNFPA Deputy Representative, Dr. Rogaia Abdelrahim; Member of Parliament for Machinga East, Honourable Esther Jolobala as well as Cecilia Khofi – Miss Malawi.
This year’s World Population Day was commemorated under the theme; family planning: empowering people, developing nations. World Population Day falls on 11 July every year but Malawi opted to have a national commemoration event on 27 July, 2017. The day is aimed at raising awareness on global population issues such as the importance of family planning, gender equality, maternal health, human rights and poverty.