Caribbean website will promote youth issues

The first phase of a new website to promote “Adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights” issues in the Caribbean opened this week.

The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) in the Caribbean and Counterpart International, a globally active non-governmental organisation, jointly launched to promote reproductive health issues for young people in the Caribbean. These issues include curbing the spread of HIV/AIDS, early initiation of sexual activity, fostering behavioural change, gender equality, sexual exploitation (including sex tourism) and their relation to other issues affecting the region, such as population, poverty reduction and sustainable development.

There are more than a billion people in the world between ages 15 and 24, representing the largest youth generation ever and the first generation of young people to grow up with HIV/AIDS.  “Young people offer the greatest hope for sustainable development in the Caribbean,” said UNFPA Caribbean Representative, Hetty Sarjeant who called on governments and civil society to keep our youth engaged in development issues.

“We are thrilled to be a part of this valuable educational process,” said Counterpart president and CEO, Lelei LeLaulu, whose organisation was already working with UNFPA in the production of the biannual Caribbean Media Exchange on Sustainable Tourism (
( “This Caribbean Media Awards website will represent an important source of information for the region`s media, health professionals and our young people,” said LeLaulu, who added that new features will be posted to the site in the weeks ahead.

UNFPA, Counterpart International and the region`s media will bring youth health issues into focus when the 2003 Caribbean Media Awards presentation is staged in Jamaica in November. Journalists will vie for more than US$6,000 in cash prizes, airline tickets and hotel stays.
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