We want to offer young people quality, accurate and verified information on vital topics

July 5, 2019 Regional and International, YMI News

“Comprehensive Approaches to Violence Prevention and Promotion of Youth Health” is the name of three educational cycles for secondary school teachers in the Bosnian-Podrinje Canton Goražde, and the second one was held last week with the aim of acquiring professional competencies for the realization of workshops on these topics within the homeroom classes.

According to the Program Manager of the Association XY Tijana Medvedec Hodžić, this is the second in a row educational training of secondary school teachers which is implemented within the project “Young Men Initiative – Promoting Healthier Lifestyles among Youth in Bosnia and Herzegovina by Challenging Gender Stereotypes (YMI)”, supported by the Government of Switzerland, the OAK Foundation, the Austrian Development Agency and CARE International Bosnia and Herzegovina.

“Education is implemented according to the European Accredited “Program Y” methodology, which is implemented within the homeroom classes, hence becoming an integral part of the curriculum for secondary schools in this Canton. The project is implemented with the support of Care International Bosnia and Herzegovina and in partnership with the Ministry of Education of the Bosnian-Podrinje Canton Goražde and the Pedagogical Institute of Goražde. The interest of teachers for professional development according to the “Program Y” methodology is at a high level, and today’s education was attended by 25 teachers from all secondary schools”, said Medvedec.

“Teachers will apply acquired knowledge in schools from September 2019. The topics covered by education have a wide range in the field of health and include gender, sex, violence prevention, risk factors, woman’s body, man’s body, sexually transmitted infections, HIV, AIDS and all that is important and relevant to the age of first and second grade high-school students. After the implementation of the project, starting from this school year young people in the Bosnian-Podrinje Canton Goražde will be among the few in Bosnia and Herzegovina who will have the access to education in the field of health and healthy lifestyles, which is participatory, interactive, interesting and workshop type”, explained the Program Manager of the Association XY Tijana Medvedec Hodžić.

Azra Bajrović, teacher of Islamic science at the mixed high school “Enver Pozderović”, believes that educational workshops are extremely useful and that this has also been shown in the work with young people.

“Students of the first and second grades of secondary schools are of the age when they are most interested in topics that strengthen their life skills. They have many questions, but they do no answers in their surroundings. When I was growing up, the topics we are now dealing with were taboo topics that we could not talk about openly with our parents or teachers. Vital topics such as prevention of the use of psychoactive substances, violence prevention, gender, sex, knowledge of woman’s and man’s body are very close to young people. They get many information through the media and social networks and thus fall into the trap of inaccurate and dangerous information. We want to offer them quality, accurate and verified information”, explained Bajrović.

Aida Kurtović, the social worker at the secondary technical school “Hasib Hadžović” says that teachers have implemented some of the topics in the homeroom classes after the first cycle of education.

“One of the most interesting topics for young people was gender and sex. Although the students had no knowledge of this topic, they actively participated. Even those students who were quite silent otherwise, were active in that class. The Program Y has proven to be an excellent methodology in enhancing the lifestyle skills of young people, especially when it comes to communication and self-confidence”, said Kurtović.

Sabina Makota, teacher of the group of economic subjects at the secondary vocational school “Džemal Bijedić” put in focus the implementation of six workshops within the homeroom classes during the previous school year.

“The workshops changed the way of thinking of students and removed barriers and obstacles in communication when it came to so-called taboo topics. The topics we have worked on today’s workshop will be implemented in the next school year. This type of professional development gives us teachers the opportunity to look at things from another angle and simply teach us how and to what extent we can transfer information to children. The manuals that we have cover a wide range of topics that will surely help children to become informed and educated about the challenges they face with at this age”, concludes Makota.

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