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Elias Msoshi

Elias Msoshi - 2019 Nominee
Position: RYENET Founder and Executive Director
Organization: Refugee Youth Empowerment Network (RYENET)
Current Location: Nyarugusu refugee Camp, Tanzania
BA(Upper second) 3.9 Sociology-September 2008-November 2011
Additional Degrees and Certifications:
-Sexual and Gender based violence Workshop by Relief to development Society--REDSO, Dar es Salaam
- Participation in HIV/AIDs education program by RESPECT-Canada
- Participation in Baseline Data Collection for Preventing Violence Against Children (PVAC) project by Innovation for Poverty Action -IPA
-Stigma Reduction Training by Center for Youth Development and Adult Education --CELA
-A Behaviorally Informed Teacher Facilitator Training by Behavioral Insight Time (BIT)
-Training in translation, tablet use and Commcare application for Research on Social Norms by International Rescue Committee (IRC)
-Conflicts, Conflicts Resolution and Peace Building Training by The University of Dar es salaam
-Interview Skills, News writing and Audio Editing Training by BBC Media Action
-Engaging with Public officials for positive change online Training by YALI NETWORK
-Teacher Classroom Observation Training by IRC
-Recognition of Participation in 2018 Global Youth Service Day by People To People International -PTPI

Awards Received:
  • Award:
    Winner of 2017Chapter Grant for an HIV/AIDS Education project
    Awarding Organization:
    People To People International--PTPI
    Date Awarded:
    May 16, 2017
  • Award:
    Winner of 2018Chapter Grant for construction of a Tailoring School for Girls
    Awarding Organization:
    People To People International--PTPI
    Date Awarded:
    May 24, 2018
75 Public Votes Reached!
Elias has been instrumental in setting up RYENET in Nyarugusu camp whose work has led to an increase in use of modern birth-control methods by 84%. Elias has trained 230+ caretakers in Nyarugusu leading to significant reduction in teenage pregnancy. – Meg Jansen, Peace Pledge Program Director at Kids for Peace
Describe your contributions to and achievements in family planning.

I am the founder of RYENet, a youth-led organization that takes provision of SRH education its core-business, coupled with livelihood trainings among refugee youth in Nyarugusu camp, Tanzania. Our volunteer work involves, among other projects, education on STI prevention, gender-awareness, and safer sex to students aged 14-24 with a bias on female students.
Since its inception in 2017, RYENet has formed over 150 school clubs of 35 members each, spearheaded by 80 trained peer educators also known as caretakers who document and challenge misconceptions around FP. Through regular demonstrations on different birth control methods, more than 6000 adolescent girls now have access to condoms and contraceptives including referrals to local health facilities, and train others

What sparked your passion for family planning?

My focus on family planning began in 2018 through a community mapping of Family Planning carried out by RYENet for prevention of early pregnancy. Growing up in a crisis affected area of Nyarugusu, I still witness a number of girls being raped and stigmatized repeatedly as not allowed to talk about sex or anything connected with birth. Consequently, early pregnancy counts for 48 % of school dropouts and poverty. Seeing this, I made it my mission equipping girls to advocate for their ASRH rights

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

As part of building the capacity of our small team of volunteers, I have managed to build partnership with UNHCR. After every one month, 2 delegates from RYENet are invited to attend a 3 day strategic planning workshop organized by the UN Refugee Agency or UNHCR on effective strategies of Communicating with Communities (CwC.) These workshops drastically empowers me to coordinate logistics, and create links with local leaders and health centers prior to meeting youth (in and out-of-school)

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? :

I want to expand RYENet’s work to reach our neighboring camps of Nduta and Mtendeli. The goal is to train 9000+ refugee girls to stand up for their right to family planning services. We will carry out public awareness campaigns using focus group discussion, sketches and theaters. After the end of campaigns, 30 local FP committees will be created in both camps to keep on with low scale training and sensitization activities whereas peer educators will keep on coaching the committee members.

Photos of the nominee in the field/at work

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