Evelyn Yessenia Texaj Pérez

Evelyn is originally from Chimaltenango and was selected as a GOJoven Fellow when she was 23 years old. She is a graduate of the Clerk’s Office and has received diplomas in collective communication and from the GOJoven fellowship program in 2017-2018. Evelyn has experience working in communities with children, adolescents and youth on the themes of Sexual Rights and Rights, Reproductive Health, advocacy, self-esteem and contraceptive methods. Evelyn will continue giving talks and workshops on sexual and reproductive health and rights, as she aims to work in the municipality of her department in the youth office to create a friendly space for youth. She recognizes that the training she has received through GOJoven has helped her to be a more critical and assertive person with her opinions.


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Celebrating the Spanish-language Launch of Hesperian’s New Training Guide “Health Actions for Women”

By Katherine Sham and Susanna Moore

August 2018

On August 23rd, 2018, GOJoven International partnered with Hesperian Health Guides to co-host the Bay Area launch of the Spanish edition of “Health Actions for Women” (Guia Practica para promover la salud de las mujeres) at the PHI headquarters in Oakland, California. Developed and field-tested with dozens of organizations across Latin America, this resource is critically important in the movement for women’s health: teaching women and men to counteract harmful gender roles, promote safe motherhood, improve access to family planning, end gender-based violence, and so much more.

GOJoven International with Hesperian Health Guides team

GOJoven International’s Senior Program Director Esther Tahrir and Susanna Moore, Project Manager, provided the introduction and background to the long collaborative relationship between Hesperian and GOJoven International, encompassing the production of this important new resource. Claudia Romeu of PHI’s Rise Up program also spoke alongside Sarah Shannon, Executive Director of Hesperian Health Guides, and Miriam Lara Mejia, Bilingual Programs Coordinator for Hesperian.

GOJoven International ED Esther Tahrir explains GOJoven’s role in developing the resource

GOJoven was one of 40 community-based organizations in 23 countries to contribute to the development of this new health education resource. In 2011, Hesperian approached GOJoven Director Esther Tahrir to discuss field testing two draft chapters of the Spanish edition of Health Actions for Women: “Family Planning” and “Sexuality and Sexual Health.” GOJoven was supportive of this project and promoted the field testing opportunity among GOJoven graduates and staff in Central America, who themselves are topical experts and trainers. GOJoven members Esther Barajas, Rudy Felipe, and Ana Lourdes Tojin, among others, agreed to review and/or field test selected activities of specific chapters. The Spanish launch event hosted at PHI headquarters highlighted this partnership and the value of the GOJoven leaders’ feedback to Hesperian in improving the training guide activities, as well as in gathering new ideas for illustration and word choice in the manuscript. Additionally, Marin Vasquez, a Guatemalan youth leader from PHI’s Rise Up program Let Girls Lead, contributed in the field testing of this guide.

Young GOJoven leaders in action field testing the resource

Just a few weeks before this launch event, Hesperian Health Guides held its local launch of this resource in Guatemala City, on August 2, 2018. GOJoven Guatemala staff members Marta Honoria Castillo, Erasmo Leon, and Cristian Morán were among over 100 attendees at the event. Speakers included Lucrecia Hernández Mack, a visionary who made valiant attempts to reform Guatemala’s troubled public health sector during her recent though short-lived tenure as Minister of Health, and Elsa Rabanales, a dynamic young organizer with the rural indigenous women’s network Actoras de Cambio, based in Guatemala’s highlands. In an effort to improve access to and provide immediate availability of the book to regional partners, Hesperian piloted a local print run of 200 copies of the guide at a Guatemalan print house. Moving forward, Hesperian hopes to distribute its materials more widely, particularly in the Central American region.

At GOJoven, we deeply admire and support Hesperian’s work to provide health education and help individuals take greater control over their health. Because we share a common mission of improving the health, SRHR, and development of communities at the local level, we are proud to partner with organizations like Hesperian to further advance these goals in the communities we serve. As such, we have disseminated this new resource across the GOJoven Alumni network of over 400 young leaders in Mexico and Central America and the 4 GOJoven Alumni Associations that are deeply embedded in the sexual and reproductive rights and women’s and girls’ rights networks in their countries. The GOJoven Associations are excited to use this practical, user-friendly Guide in their own field-based training activities with women, girls and other community leaders, and we envision that this resource will be a powerful tool as they continue empowering other young women and men to become advocates and leaders in family planning and reproductive health.

For more information about Hesperian books and resources, see www.hesperian.org.

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GoFundMe Campaign for GOJoven Fellow’s Memorial Service

We at GOJoven are sad to share the news of the death of our treasured alumni fellow, colleague, and friend Octaciano (Chano) Banegas Galeas. Chano passed away on June 30, 2018 in Texas, as he journeyed from Honduras in search of a better life for himself and his family. To learn more about Chano’s story, read our blog post here.

In order to help Chano’s family with the high cost of returning his body home to Honduras, we have started this GoFundMe campaign and would appreciate any and all donations. The money raised will help Chano’s family pay off the bank debt they incurred to bring Chano home and pay him homage, as well as help his wife and four-year-old son to cover basic expenses as they recover from their loss.

Our hearts go out to Chano and his family. Thank you very much, on behalf of Chano’s family and community, for your contribution.

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ZonaSegura: GOJoven’s newest collaborative project to build safe spaces for adolescents in Honduras

Photo courtesy of Asociación GOJoven Honduras

With support from the World Bank and the Sexual Violence Research Initiative (SVRI), ZonaSegura is a trauma-informed youth-centered innovative mobile solution to address teen dating violence in Honduras. Led by YTH, in partnership with GOJoven Honduras and the Public Health Institute’s (PHI) GOJoven International Program, this project aims to prevent teen dating violence (TDV) through provision of prevention information, healthy relationship education, and geo-location linkage to TDV services and resources. ZonaSegura leverages the high rates of mobile phone usage among young women and girls (YWG) and men and boys (YMB) ages 14-19 in Honduras to assist them in overcoming individual and structural barriers to accessing rights-based and gender-sensitive TDV prevention information and services.

Read more:

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GOJoven Fellows Lead Trainings for Radio Announcers in Mexico

1 grp shotRadio has the power to disseminate information to even the remotest locales, making it an excellent medium for providing young people the information they need to understand and protect their sexual and reproductive health.

Just this month, fellows of GOJoven, in partnership with nonprofit organization Inspira Cambio, offered comprehensive training to more than a dozen local youth radio broadcasters, and members of an adolescent boys collective called JXiibal, in order to equip them with the basic skills they need to talk about and deal with issues related to sexual and reproductive health, HIV prevention, discrimination, and sexism.

3 Nicte facilitandoThe training was coordinated by GOJoven fellows Rodolfo Moo Chi of the Commission for the Development of Indigenous people, and Silvia Muñoz of Inspira Cambio. Carlos Can Estrella, also a fellow of GOJoven, trained participants on leadership, teamwork, and HIV prevention, and Nicté Chablé Berlin, of GOJoven, gave a training on sexist language in the media.

2 grp cirlceFollowing the trainings, attendees took a test to assess their ability to communicate, coordinate and lead. After they finished the test they had the opportunity to talk about what they had discovered through the workshops.

In addition to empowering attendees with important information regarding how they could protect their sexual and reproductive health, the training created a small network where participants will be able to exchange information and link with other organizations for future collaboration.

For more information on the work of GOJoven fellows to create positive change in Adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health (ASRH) programs, policies, and services in Mexico and Central America through education and advocacy, subscribe to receive our monthly email updates and Like us on Facebook.

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Women’s Rights Advocate speaks at the Public Health Institute

Danessa Luna (second from right) joins the Resource Teams for the GOJoven and AGALI programs and presents her work at the Public Health Institute in Oakland, CA on November 27, 2012.

Danessa Luna, the founder of Asociación Generando in Chimaltenango, Guatemala, shared her work on empowering and teaching adolescent girls to defend their human rights with the  Public Health Institute (PHI). Danessa’s NGO provides comprehensive services to women who have experienced or are at risk for sexual violence, including legal support, psychological and medical care, social support and temporary shelter to women who are victims of violence. Another facet of the organization’s work focuses on educating women and girls about their health, sexual and reproductive rights, violence and fostering new leadership in young women. Danessa has a long history of collaborating with PHI. She graduated from GOJoven’s Training of Trainers and continues to be a key trainer for the GOJoven program in the areas of gender, violence prevention and sexual and reproductive rights. In 2011, Danessa was selected as an Fellow of the Adolescent Girls Advocacy and Leadership Program (AGALI), and for the past two years, the AGALI program has funded Asociación Generando to establish one of the only women’s shelters in Guatemala and also to provide girl-centered services at the shelter for adolescent girls seeking refuge from violent situations at home.

Asociación Generando also advocates with the Guatemalan government to implement the law against femicide, which is an increasing problem in Guatemala. On April 9, 2008, Guatemala passed the Ley contra el Femicidio y otras Formas de Violencia contra la Mujer [Law Against Femicide and Other Forms of Violence Against Women or “Femicide Law”] and although the passage of this law is considered very positive on a symbolic level, Danessa shared with us that impunity for these crimes continues and that the number of femicides continues to rise year after year.

A graduate in Sociology at San Carlos University in Guatemala, Danessa is currently a Fellow of the International Fellowship Program (iLEAP) inSeattlefunded by the Seattle Foundation, where she joins a network of change leaders that are committed to building strong global partnerships for social change.

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Forman a jóvenes en salud reproductiva, El Heraldo 08 Oct 2012

Lo que se pretende con el encuentro es formar a los jóvenes para convertirse en agentes multiplicadores del mensaje entre la población de 18 y 30 años. Al final de las capacitaciones reciben un fondo económico para que realicen sus propias jornadas formativas.  Leer más

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En Guatemala hay niñas que no juegan por cuidar de sus hijos

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En Guatemala hay niñas que no juegan por cuidar de sus hijos, Emisoras Unidas

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Dorita Lisbey

Dorita Lisbey was born in Benque Viejo and became a GOJoven Belize Fellow when she was 29 years old.  While living in the U.S., this youth leader attained her CNA certificate and worked as a nursing assistant for four years while also volunteering with a girl’s dance troupe. She also has experience working as a volunteer nursing assistant at the Mopan Health Clinic in Benque Viejo. Dorita wants to continue her work as a nurse in order to promote sexual and reproductive health in Benque.

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