Promoting the Human Right to Reproductive Health: IHR co-heads seminar for teachers and counselors

ihr-9-14-2017 1Recognizing that the Right to Reproductive Health is one of the fundamental Human Rights, the Institute of Human Rights, together with ReproCen, the Social Medicine Unit of the UP College of Medicine, and the Department of Education Quezon City, conducted “Promoting the Human Right to Reproductive Health: Training Seminar for Public School Teachers and Guidance Counselors” last Aug. 29, and Sept. 6, 2017, at the Conference Room of the Bocobo Hall.

One hundred thirty teachers and counselors attended the training sessions which aimed to present a comprehensive discussion of all aspects contributing to the Human Right to Reproductive Health, including Psychology, Medicine, Statistics, and the Law.ihr-9-14-2017 2

Dr. Grace Aguiling – Dalisay, former Dean of UP CSSP, presented the Psychological Development of Adolescents, discussing comprehensively the importance of the stage of adolescence in the growth of the participants’ students, as well as the problems which researches have shown to surface in this stage and how to prepare for them. This was followed by an overview of adolescent reproductive health in the Philippines by Dr. Nympha Ogena of the UP Population Institute She provided the participants with information regarding the socio-economic profile of the Flipino youth, sexual and non-sexual risk behaviors and their consequences, as well as sexually-transmitted diseases and unintended pregnancies.

IHR Director, Prof. Elizabeth Aguiling – Pangalangan reviewed the international and national laws and policies on Adolescent Reproductive Health, including the Magna Carta of Women and the Responsible Parenthood and Reproductive Health Act. She examined Reproductive Health Rights in three categories: the Right to Health Care, the Right to Self-Determination, and Rights vis-à-vis Responsibilities.

After these three lectures, Former Chancellor of U.P. Manila Dr. Marita Reyes presented a demonstration on the use of the modules in teaching reproductive health which were given to each of the participants by the organizers. Volunteers from the participating body were tasked to role play as students while Dr. Reyes served as instructor. Through this demonstration, the educators present at the training seminar learned how to deal with various issues which their students may raise in class.

Lastly, the training seminar also featured a Workshop and Interactive Plenary Session where the participants were tasked to participate in breakout sessions and present ideas on how to effectively carry out their mandate of teaching reproductive health to their students. Through this session, the participants were given the chance to apply all the ideas that they learned from the speakers and present them to the panel. Dr. Dela Paz also delivered the synthesis of the lessons at the end of the program.

Associate Dean of the U.P. College of Law, Prof. Concepcion Jardeleza, who was present on both training dates, urged the participants to carry out their role in guiding their students towards safer and better choices as regards Reproductive Health. Atty. Raymond Baguilat, Law Reform Specialist of the Institute of Human Rights, served as moderator of the event.