Emee Lei Albano-Valdehuesa

Emee Lei Albano-Valdehuesa - 2016 Nominee
Position: Adolescent Development and Participation Consultant
Organization: The Red Whistle
Emee began as a youth representative to UNFPA Philippines and has represented the youth of the country in international and national SRHR discussions. She conducts ASRH trainings in areas of conflict and disasters and continues to champion ASRH. – Kevin de Vera, Program Associate at Forum for Family Planning and Development, Inc.
Describe your contributions to and achievements in family planning.

I've organised youth groups from different Key populations, trained youth leaders and connected them to development groups, government agencies, private entities and non government organisations to leverage skills and resources in providing adolescents and young people opportunities to access life skills information and access to adolescent sexual and reproductive health services.
Ive also trained teachers and other stakeholders in understanding the vulnerabilities of young people- in both normal and emergency settings, and how to better connect with them and provide information and services on adolescent sexual and reproductive health. Ive contributed to reviews and revision of life skills modules for adolescents and young people (including those who are at risk)

What sparked your passion for family planning?

My mother availed of a family planning method after an unplanned pregnancy. I realised it was difficult, even for professionals like them to make ends meet with kids growing almost at the same time.
In the Philippines, pregnancy among adolescents is alarming but policies are restrictive and prohibitive. I felt that FP for adolescents was one of the hardest advocacies to promote but a very crucial one, to ensure holistic development for young people.It is a human right but is difficult to claim

What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced in your family planning efforts, and what have you done to overcome it?

FP services for minors is restricted in the Philippines and can only be availed with parents' consent. Together with other advocates, we worked with stakeholders both on health and child protection, policy makers and service providers and young people, making them understand the concept of the best interest of the child and the capacity to assess one's risk and decide whether or not to access services that would help them.It was also helpful to highlight risk and vulnerabilities their exposed to

What is your (country/region/city)’s biggest challenge in family planning, and how can it be addressed?

while Philippines has passed a reproductive health law, we have yet to see its full implementation.There must be an extra effort to popularise the requirements of the law so people would understand their rights, the accountability of the government, as well as the range of options they could choose. Consent protocol for minors (for FP) should be scaled up using evidence from existing models. comprehensive CSE must be developed in a way that it responds to the needs of both students & teachers

What do you want to accomplish in the next 5 years?

I want to establish a social entrepreneurship program, linking sustainable development to agri/eco-tourism with education sector. ASRH will be integrated in program for my partners- esp the young people,especially those out of school;YKAPS;those with kids who need to provide for their families thus missing school as well. The program will maximise successful models from public-private partnerships. I always believe FP is not stand alone, but rather a crucial component of any dev't work

Subscribe to receive email updates about 120 Under 40.