Bidian Okoth

Bidian Okoth - 2019 Nominee
Position: Co- Founder at RESPEKT, Head of Advocacy Department and Youth Advocate
Organization: RESPEKT
Current Location: Nairobi Kenya
Student of Medicine from Kenyatta University
Additional Degrees and Certifications:
-Project Management Training by Danish Youth Council
- YALI Training
- Health Budget Advocacy Training by E4A_MamaYe
Awards Received:
  • Award:
    Student of Exemplary deed 2016/2017
    Awarding Organization:
    Date Awarded:
    March 20, 2017
  • Award:
    Chairperson Youth Advisory Panel
    Awarding Organization:
    British High Commission, DFID - Kenya
    Date Awarded:
    May 9, 2018
  • Award:
    Best debater on Gender Equity, Gender Equality, Gender Mainstreaming and Family Planning
    Awarding Organization:
    Directorate of Gender Kenyatta University
    Date Awarded:
    May 12, 2017
75 Public Votes Reached!
Organised the training of students from University to be Young Advocates and facilitators of SRHR workshops, who later visit high school to create awareness on SRHR including contraceptives use on a peer to peer model. Mentor young SRHR advocates – Nominator
Describe your contributions to and achievements in family planning.

- Coordinated the training of 146 medical students to be facilitators of SRHR in High Schools across the country. Some of the themes handled are unplanned pregnancy, contraception, sexually transmitted infection and Pubertal changes.

- Through a training at Evidence for Action Mama Ye. Where we mobilised the public to participate in budget Advocacy through public participation and persuade lawmakers to commit to increasing budget allocation to contraceptives and other SRHR services in Nairobi County.

- As a member of Policy and Advocacy Committee at Commonwealth Youth Council, we build capacity on Youth organisations that are working on different issues, my focus has been those working on SRHR particularly Contraceptives and Teenage Pregnancy

What sparked your passion for family planning?

-Most of my female classmates in Primary School are currently young mothers. Despite being the smartest in my class, they couldn't access family planning services due to how remote my home area was. Additionally, the taboos limited access to information and thus most of them didn't know about the contraceptives options that existed.

The most saddening fact is lack of choice. Lack of information denied them a choice on deciding to use them or not, and being a chauvinist society made it worse

Give one or two examples of how you display leadership in your family planning work.:

- A leader needs to create capacity in others. Instead of working alone, I and my colleagues coordinated a training of trainers that ensured 140+ members of RESPEKT are able to facilitate these discussions with teenagers in different locations across the country.

- As a good leader, my roles haven't been confined to supervision but I do facilitate the workshops actively with my colleagues.

- What makes RESPEKT unique is the role of peer to peer education in creating this awareness.

If you are named a winner of 120 under 40, how will you use this new platform and the $1000 grant to advance your work? :

On the platform, I would put it as my responsibility to inspire more people to be mentors and facilitators who will create awareness on options and access to contraceptives.
- I will also advocate for peer to peer model of creating awareness and access to family planning options.
- I'll use a part of my award to create a manual on peer to peer facilitation as a breakthrough to creating access and awareness vof Family Planning options.

Photos of the nominee in the field/at work
Educating youth from Kilifi County on different contraceptives and possible places they could access them Having a workshop to demestify  the myth on contraceptives and creating awareness on its  access, types and options with high school girls in Murang'a County. A dialogue with young ladies from Kwale County on contraceptives access and options within the county

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