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LETTER TO THE EDITOR
Year : 2017  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 171-172

Assessment of the Health Needs and Preparation of an Election Manifesto by Young People in Liberia


Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

Date of Web Publication24-Oct-2017

Correspondence Address:
Saurabh R Shrivastava
Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Ammapettai Village, Thiruporur - Guduvancherry Main Road, Sembakkam Post, Kancheepuram, Chennai 603 108, Tamil Nadu
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/mamcjms.mamcjms_39_17

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How to cite this article:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J. Assessment of the Health Needs and Preparation of an Election Manifesto by Young People in Liberia. MAMC J Med Sci 2017;3:171-2

How to cite this URL:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J. Assessment of the Health Needs and Preparation of an Election Manifesto by Young People in Liberia. MAMC J Med Sci [serial online] 2017 [cited 2019 Dec 14];3:171-2. Available from: http://www.mamcjms.in/text.asp?2017/3/3/171/217123

Sir,

Young people constitute a major proportion of the global population and have been regarded as one of the most vulnerable population groups.[1] This is predominantly because of the lack of awareness about potential risks and availability of health or welfare services, minimal attention from the policy makers, risk-taking behavior, peer pressure, reluctance to interact with elders for guidance on sensitive issues, ignorance, and prejudiced healthcare providers.[1],[2] Further, the situation is quite challenging in regions experiencing humanitarian emergencies.[1]

The residents of Liberia experienced a brutal war for a very long period, which ended 14 years ago.[1] However, even now, young people cannot lead a normal life and most of the welfare measures are still not sufficient.[1],[3] In fact, it won’t be wrong to say that the stakeholders have failed immensely to not only restore law and order in the nation but even the delivery of routine welfare measures.[1],[3] In addition, the problem of poverty is widespread, rates of enrolment or retention in schools are low, and the incidence of pregnancy among young girls is extremely high (49 births per 1000 girls in 15–19-year age group), all of which indicating that a lot needs to be done to improve the living standards of young people.[1]

The available estimates from the nation revealed that more than 50% of the nation’s population is living on less than $2 a day.[1] Further, young people have minimal access to sexual and reproductive health information and care, whereas girls are vulnerable to exclusion or dropouts from school, maltreatment, and abuse.[3],[4],[5] Also the nation has been highly ranked in terms of women dying from preventable causes during childbirth, and all these problems are stalling the growth and development of young people in the nation.[1]

Overall, the assessment of the scenario reflects that a wide range of physical, emotional, medical, psychological, educational, and financial needs of young people has to be addressed.[2],[3] To meet these needs and streamline the entire process, there is an indispensable need to involve political leaders.[1] In fact, the United Nations Population Fund has conducted discussions with young people across the nation and has been successful in developing the national level youth manifesto.[1] Moreover, as the nation is preparing for an upcoming election, this has been identified as the appropriate time by the youth leaders to demand for their necessities and urgent actions which are required.[1]

The development of the manifesto is an important milestone and reflects the association between political parties and youth of the nation.[1] It consists of the varied needs of the young people, including quality education, healthcare delivery, sexual and reproductive health needs, and so on, which need to be met and the political parties have pledged for taking immediate actions to meet the same.[1] Moreover, there is a special clause to involve youth in the decision-making process on issues affecting them, as it will negate the prevailing barriers of youth exclusion in the nation’s development and peace restoration.[1]

To conclude, the young people of Liberia have succeeded in developing a youth manifesto, which is a clear blueprint for the future political leaders to address their concerns in a time-bound manner and thus, clear the way for growth and prosperity in the nation.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

 
  References Top

1.
United Nations Population Fund. Young People Call for Education, Health Care, Rights – and Politicians are Listening. 2017. Available from: http://www.unfpa.org/news/young-people-call-education-health-care-rights-and-politicians-are-listening. [Last accessed on May 25, 2017].  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J. Improving adolescent health by meeting global standards set by the World Health Organization. Ann Trop Med Public Health 2017;10:284-5.  Back to cited text no. 2
  [Full text]  
3.
Levey EJ, Oppenheim CE, Lange BC, Plasky NS, Harris BL, Lekpeh GG et al. A qualitative analysis of parental loss and family separation among youth in post-conflict Liberia. Vulnerable Child Youth Stud 2017;12:1-16.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J. An urgent global need to reduce the prevalence of youth violence in heterogeneous settings. Int J Adv Med Health Res 2016;3:36-7.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
5.
Levey EJ, Borba CP, Harris BL, Carney JR, Dominguez S, Wang EK et al. Assessment of the needs of vulnerable youth populations in post-conflict Liberia. Afr J Psychiatry (Johannesbg) 2013;16:349-55.  Back to cited text no. 5
    




 

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