Tools for Policymaking
Several tools exist to guide the YRH policymaking process. While some of these tools are specific to YRH, others are more general but can be adapted for YRH purposes.
Advocacy Kit for Adolescent Reproductive Health (1034kb) (Advocates for Youth, n.d.). This Advocacy Kit contains information on the basic components of an advocacy campaign. Specific sections address working in groups to achieve your goals (Coalition Building in Community Education and Advocacy), promoting your goals to the public (Education and Media Campaigns) and influencing the legislative process in your favor (Lobbying: the Art of Persuasion). It also includes a list of organizations concerned with adolescent reproductive and sexual health, sample press materials, information for addressing criticism and opposition, a sample needs assessment and other materials about specific adolescent health issues.
Advocating for Adolescent Reproductive Health in Eastern Europe and Central Asia (405kb) (Advocates for Youth and UNFPA, 2005). This advocacy kit is designed to help young advocates develop their skills. It describes some of the steps in organizing campaigns and provides information on developing, implementing, and evaluating a successful advocacy strategy. The toolkit provides examples of advocacy efforts by looking closely at the strategies and activities of reproductive health advocates in Eastern Europe and Central Asia. These examples can provide guidance, stimulate ideas, and generate new contacts among fellow youth activities from around the world.
Advocating for Adolescent Reproductive Health in Sub-Saharan Africa (477kb) (Advocates and Youth, 1998). This advocacy kit is designed to help advocates in Africa develop the skills to advocate for young people's reproductive health education and care. It describes some of the steps and provides some examples in organizing campaigns and provides information on developing, implementing, and evaluating a successful advocacy strategy.
Conceptual Framework for Evaluating Adolescent Reproductive Health Policies and Programs Design. Case Studies from Burkina Faso, Cameroon and Togo (156kb) (A.-E. Calves, 2002). This framework is designed to facilitate the assessment of ARH policy and program development by describing the components of good ARH policies and programs. The results of this assessment can help those working on ARH issues to identify the weaknesses in policies as articulated by national governments and programs as outlined in government documents. The tool presents major elements of ARH policy and program development and sets benchmarks against which future policy and program development can be measured. It also compares ARH policy and program development in three Francophone African countries: Burkina Faso, Cameroon, and Togo.
||Empowering Youth through National Policies: UNESCO's Contribution (480kb) (UNESCO, 2004). In response to several Member States' request for assistance in formulating and developing a national youth policy, this publication provides guidance to decisionmakers who wish to formulate a national youth policy and to evaluate and improve already existing youth policies and programs. It promotes active partnership with young people in developing and improving national youth policies.
||Global Guidance Briefs on HIV interventions for young people (ILO, UNAIDS, WHO, and others, 2008). This package of seven Guidance Briefs, based on the latest global evidence, is intended to help United Nations Country Teams and UN Theme Groups on AIDS to provide guidance to their staff members as well as governments, development partners, civil society and other implementing partners on the specific actions that need to be in place to respond effectively to HIV among young people.
- 1. Overview of HIV interventions for young people
- 2. HIV interventions for most-at-risk young people
- 3. HIV interventions for young people in humanitarian emergencies
- 4. Community-based HIV interventions for young people
- 5. HIV interventions for young people in the education sector
- 6. HIV interventions for young people in the workplace
- 7. HIV Interventions in the health sector for young people.
Growing Up Global: An Advocacy Kit on Youth Issues (PRB and Advocates for Youth, 2006). Based on data and conclusions from the National Academy of Sciences book Growing Up Global: The Changing Transition to Adulthood in Developing Countries, the kit provides a wealth of clear and concise data about economic, social, developmental, and health trends for youth—as well as proven policy steps for addressing those trends.
||Guide to the Implementation of the World Programme of Action for Youth (1.7 MB PDF) (UN, 2006). This Guide focuses on what Governments can do to fulfill the vision enshrined in the World Programme of Action for Youth (WPAY). It acknowledges a need for a new impetus to be given to the design and implementation of youth policies and programmes. Each section of the book briefly examines the concept of each priority area and how it is experienced by youth. It looks at mechanisms and specific policies that may enhance the political, cultural and socio-economic opportunities for youth. The recommendations and ideas contained in the book are inspired by analyses, case studies, lessons learned and good practices documented by a wide range of sources. While some of the recommendations contained in this Guide may be considered “quick wins”, others can only be implemented effectively with long-term commitment and recognition by Governments.
Indicators of a (National) Youth Policy (2002, European Youth Forum, 5pp). This document presents 11 indicators for what should be seen as essential elements of a (national) youth policy. ’11 Indicators of a (National) Youth Policy’ should be perceived as a guiding tool for government officials in the youth field, as well as a lobbying instrument for youth NGOs advocating for a more proactive youth policy.
Keep the Promise: A Teaching Resource on Advocacy and HIV and AIDS(2.10MB) (Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance, 2006). Aimed at young people aged 11 to 16, this Christian, faith-based guide builds skills to carry out letter-writing campaigns and encourages young people to advocate in their communities.
Making Commitments Matter: A Toolkit for Young People to Evaluate National Youth Policy (UN Economic and Social Affairs, 2005). The toolkit is intended for youth organizations and representatives working with youth who are able to assess national actions. It is meant as a way for youth organizations to initiate dialogue with their governments on the UN Program on Youth.
My Voice Counts! Campaigns for Youth's Reproductive and Sexual Health Advocacy and Organizing Toolkit (234kb) (Advocates for Youth, 2005). My Voice Counts! is a U.S. national campaign that is created by and for young people and demands their right to sexual health information and services. The campaign works to secure: (1) Improved access to emergency contraception including access without a doctor's prescription; (2) Comprehensive sex education in America's schools; (3) Realistic global HIV prevention programs; and (4) U.S. funding for international family planning. This tool provides guidance to youth activists in the field of sexual health in creating a coordinated movement to bring youth's reproductive and sexual health information and services to the forefront of the United States agenda.
Networking for Policy Change: An Advocacy Training Manual (POLICY Project, 1999). This manual aims to build capacity of advocates to develop effective reproductive health advocacy skills, as well as to develop and maintain advocacy networks. It includes (1) topics on networking, communications, and policy environments, and (2) exercises on conceptualizing, implementing, monitoring, and evaluating advocacy campaigns.
NEWGEN (1663kb) (POLICY Project, 2002). The adolescent and young adult reproductive health "New Generation" Model, or NewGen, is a population-based projection model that can be used to illustrate the impacts of policies and programs aimed at improving the reproductive health of young people. NewGen's purpose is to generate information useful for policy awareness raising, goal setting, and planning. Although access to this tool is not restricted, it is intended that use of NewGen be supported with technical assistance in training new users and in conjunction with a process that involves relevant stakeholders in a particular country setting.
Policies on Adolescent Health and Development: A Guide for Policymakers (542kb) (World Health Organization, 2003). This booklet provides the rationale for investing in adolescents and presents guiding principles for adolescent health and development policies, various policy options, and elements of adolescent health and development policies.
Policy Circle (369 kb) (POLICY Project, 2004). This tool provides comprehensive guidance on the policymaking process. It can be used in any sector, including youth reproductive health. The paper describes a framework through which the components of policy development and implementation can be better understood and analyzed. The framework can also be used to analyze different levels of policy, including national and local policies, and sectoral and operational policies. Tools exist to analyze each component of the Policy Circle, which are included on a CD-Rom.
The Policy Environment Score: Measuring the Degree to Which the Policy Environment in Jamaica Supports Effective Policies and Programs for Reproductive Health: 2000 Follow-up Results (136kb) (POLICY Project, 2001). The Policy Environment Score (PES) is intended to measure the degree to which the policy environment in a particular country supports the reproductive health of the population, with particular focus on access to high-quality family planning and reproductive health services. It is designed to reflect both the level of support and changes that take place during one to three years as a result of policy activities.
The Policy Environment Score: Measuring the Degree to Which the Policy Environment in Jamaica Supports Effective Policies and Programs for Adolescent Reproductive Health: 2002 Round (147kb) (Youth.now and the POLICY Project, 2003). Prior to 2002, two rounds of the PES had been fielded in Jamaica, the first in 1999 and the second in 2000. This 2002 round of the PES, conducted jointly by Youth.now and the POLICY Project, focuses exclusively on adolescents.
||Reproductive Rights of Adolescents: A Tool for Health and Empowerment(Center for Reproductive Rights, 2008, 25pp) This paper outlines the general framework of adolescents' reproductive and sexual rights. It focuses on sexuality education, access to confidential health care, child marriage and lack of educational opportunity, sexual violence, and female genital mutilation. The authors list recommendations about how governments, youth advocates, and health care providers can help ensure that adolescents have the ability to make and act on informed reproductive decisions.
||Seminar on Youth Policy Development in South East Europe, Final Report (December 2008, 24 pages). This seminar, which was held between 22nd and 24th September 2008, in Belgrade was the second such event devoted to the development of youth policy in the region of South-East Europe organised by the Youth Partnership between the Council of Europe and the European Commission and the SALTO SEE Resource Centre. It built upon the initial groundwork undertaken at the first seminar held at Trogir, Croatia in September 2007.
The stated aims of the seminar were summarised in the following terms:
- To share examples of good practice concerning youth policy development and/or implementation;
- To encourage dialogue about youth policy development and implementation among the main stakeholders in the youth field in the SEE region; and
- To identify the actions that should be taken at international level in order to develop youth policy in the SEE region.
||Sexual and Reproductive Health of Women and Girls Living with HIV: Guidance for Program Managers, Health Workers and Activists (3.2 MB PDF) (EngenderHealth, 2008). While women and girls living with HIV should be able to exercise the same rights as everyone else—including to choose freely if and when to become pregnant—this is often not the case. Even in Brazil, which has one of the most progressive HIV programs in the world, yet where the face of HIV is increasingly female, women have faced a host of challenges. This report developed with support from the David and Lucile Packard Foundation draws on lessons learned in Brazil to offer guidance and recommendations for creating programs that protect and promote the sexual and reproductive health and rights of women and girls living with HIV and AIDS.
||Youth Policy here and now! (287kb, 2005, 43pp) The seminar “Youth Policy – Here and now”, took place at the Swedish Institute in Alexandria, 11-14 September, 2005. It was organised by the Ministry of Youth in Egypt, the Council of Europe – through the Youth Partnership with the European Commission - and the Swedish National Board for Youth Affairs and the Swedish Institute in Alexandria. This report is a summary of the different sessions and questions discussed during the seminar. The seminar was a contribution to the youth policy developments and initiatives in the participating countries, and served to:
- Exchange practices of youth policy definition, implementation and monitoring
- Debate and exchange on the role and functions of youth policy in a democratic society
- Identify forms of youth participation and its role in developing cohesive youth policies
- Initiate dialogue and cooperation among youth policy practitioners in European and Middle East/Mediterranean countries
- Take stock of recent developments and initiatives in Europe and the Middle East regarding youth policy development.
Youth Policy Formulation Manual (124kb) (ICYNP, n.d.). This manual was developed for countries in the Asia and Pacific region initiating the process of formulating national youth policies, and for those countries interested in reviewing and building upon previous formulation initiatives.