News

International Volunteer Day marked at the Y-PEER Youth Center

7 December 2017

International Volunteer Day was marked today at the Peer Education Youth Center in Ashgabat.  More than 30 Y-PEER volunteers have celebrated the day at the Youth Center at the Palace of children and adolescents together with the representatives of UNFPA, United Nations Population Fund, Ministry of Education and administration of the Palace.

The grand celebration featured the presentations of the Y-PEER volunteers on the activities and achievements throughout the year.  Volunteers have kept busy promoting healthy living among their peers at secondary schools, summer camps, as well as the youth centers in the capital and Mary city.  The sessions on healthy living, including adolescent reproductive health and gender equality, have become so popular that the Peer Education Youth Center have conducted a few sessions for parents of the teenagers, as well as the school teachers.

Y-PEER volunteers regularly go through trainings for trainers and well equipped to lead series of events and campaigns to empower young people using the peer-to-peer approach with the knowledge and skills to make healthy choices. 

An important part of the presentation was the experience shared by the volunteers from commemoration of many international days together with the international organizations.  Indeed, every year World Population Day, 16 Days of Activism, World Children’s Day, the UN Day and many other international days do not go marked without the support and dedication of the Y-PEER volunteers in Turkmenistan. 

“There is so much inspiration that we derive from participation in these global events and campaigns,” said Nartach Garayeva, Y-PEER volunteer, 16.  “We feel so empowered to make our small contribution to the cause.  But with the empowerment we also feel a great responsibility, and it’s exciting!”

There is so much life at the Youth Center.  Besides regular sessions and activities conducted by the volunteers on adolescent reproductive health, gender equality and prevention of bad habits, these youth leaders also make time for clubs and ad-hoc activities that help unleash the creative potential of the young people.  At the celebration, the volunteers demonstrated their talents, quizzes and projects they have produced within a variety of clubs, including books club, English speaking club, drama and music, team-building among many others. 

“Volunteerism is not only about doing a good thing for other people, it is first of all, about becoming a better person,” said Margarita Chihladze, Y-PEER volunteer, 15.  “When we change ourselves towards good, we become better, brighter and kinder; hence naturally we help make the world a better place.” 

Since the opening of the Youth Centers in Turkmenistan, more than 30,000 young people, including adolescents, already had an opportunity to reflect on their lifestyle and increase their knowledge on healthy and responsible living through peer-to-peer edutainment activities. 

“UNFPA in Turkmenistan is proud to support Y-PEER volunteers in their invaluable contribution to improving the health of young people, including adolescents, in Turkmenistan,” said Ms. Bayramgul Garabayeva, UNFPA Assistant Representative.  “UNFPA recognizes peer-to-peer approach as one of the most effective techniques for teaching life skills to young people. Y-PEER volunteers do not only spread the information on healthy living, they also help empower their peers to make a positive difference in their own lives and life of their country.”

Adopting the concept of youth-led informal education on comprehensive reproductive health at the Youth Centers, and expanding the centers to the velayats is an important part of the partnership between UNFPA and the Ministry of Education of Turkmenistan.  The cooperation continues in increasing the access of young people to information on adolescent reproductive health and gender equality through mandatory subject Basics of Life skills in secondary schools and improving the quality of teaching through integration of teaching standards and norms.

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Encourage your adolescent family members and friends to visit the Peer Education Youth centers at the following addresses:

  • Youth Center at the Palace of children and adolescents of Ashgabat city: 2 Gorogly street,  Ashgabat, Turkmenistan; Phone: +(99312) 27-54-43;
  • Youth Center at the Central Council of the Youth Organization of Turkmenistan: Archabil ave., 101, Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, telephone number: +(99312) 44-88-66.
  • Youth Center at the Mary branch of Youth Organization of Turkmenistan: Gurbansoltaneje str., 83, Mary, Turkmenistan; telephone number: +(993522) 7-12-32.

Working Hours and Time: Monday-Friday, 09:00-17:00

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UNFPA: Delivering the world where every pregnancy is wanted, every childbirth is safe, and every young person’s potential is fulfilled.

For additional information, please contact:

Bayramgul Garabayeva, UNFPA Assistant Representative

garabayeva@unfpa.org

Ene Tuyliyeva, Advocacy Communication Associate

tuyliyeva@unfpa.org

Tel: 488325

Web: turkmenistan.unfpa.org, tm.one.un.org