Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Counseling Program at the Center

Students in Kibera were on break from school for the month of August and we took this opportunity to launch a daily counseling program for youth at the Community Center. Many of the participants were players from the Uweza soccer team. The program lasted for three weeks and was lead by Becky, Uweza's Counseling Manager and Joyce, Uweza's Girls Soccer Coach. We hope to continue this program once or twice a week for the rest of the schooly ear.

Below is a blog post written by Becky about the program.

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This was an am amazing moment to relate with sponsored children as we talk heart to heart matter of life.

From day one we created a rapport where started by setting the ground rules of journey we walk together.

The aim of this counselling program was to help the young people deal with the difficult situation they face in their lives as they grow up. Beside soccer program the management of Uweza came up with this educating counselling program so that they can be all rounded teenager/ youth.

However, there was a lot of relationship with the soccer and counselling where kids could identify with e.g discipline in life and in the field, focus in life, books, and in the field, friendship among others attribute we were learning. Both boy and girls did topics together which was very interactive and healthy.

During this learning lesson I provided them with a supportive environment that will help them build their self confidence, acquire knowledge, dispel myths, develop positive values and attitudes , and adopt responsible practices when in school, at the field , at home , with their friends or at the centre. Every day they would do a home work or a reflection of the things they have learnt and this helped me to assess how far they are getting the information

Some of the topics we went through are as follows.

Self awareness and self worth : The purpose of this lesson was to help them build self confidence, self acceptance and to value themselves. Typically adolescents are not happy with who they are or their situation, they want to be taller or shorter, to have money to live in a different house etc. This topic can protect them from negative influences and accept who they are and what they have.

Body changes during Puberty : Mostly teenagers learn about body changes of puberty and sex from their peers, they may hear information that is confusing and lead them to risky behaviour. The session was to provide teenagers with correct information about changes in their bodies. It also includes new things they needed to consider during this time like personal hygiene.

Consequences of premarital and extramarital sex : Curiosity and peer pressure are very real forces in the lives of teenagers. The purpose of this session was to help teenagers value the purpose of sex in marriage and to understand there can be negative consequences, physical, emotional, spiritual and mental- when they have sex outside marriage relationship.



The facts about HIV/ AIDS and STIs: This session was dealing with facts about HIV/ AIDS and STIs. It contained many facts, though I tried to keep them vey simple and clear, kept them engaged and involved with the knowledge they were receiving.

Valuing Abstinence : Though they were aware of consequences of premarital sex, they may still decide to have sex in spite of risk to their health and well being. They may be seeking, acceptance, admiration and affection from their peers. In this session i was trying to help them discover that they can still have these things without being sexually active.



Dangers of drugs, alcohol and the influence of the media: Young people may want to make good choices, but there are many influences and temptations that can persuade them to make bad choices and decisions. Using drugs and alcohol can put them in to a great risk to their life and
health. This session aimed at helping them to be aware of these dangers and to consider how these things can affect their health, goals, and decision. It also focused on negative peer influences and build skills to help them overcome peer pressure, allowing following what is right.

However, this program is good but it needs a lot of follow up, because the environment the said teenagers are growing in is among the contributing factor to risky behaviours. Thus, there is a lot of work to be done for these teenagers if this information is to sink through and be put into practice.

The program was wrapped up with skit, poem, song and drama which was like a summary of what we were learning throughout the two weeks. With the help of coach Joyce it was very good.



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