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Yvonne Barrow

Yvonne Barrow - 2019 Nominee
Position: Co-Chair of Projects Committee
Organization: SRHR Adventures
Bachelors Degree Sociology
Additional Degrees and Certifications:
Advocacy Academy- Women Deliver 2019
Days for Girls Ambassador for Women Health 101 2019
Training of Trainers- Faith in the Commonwealth 2018
Youth Leadership Programme (Modules 1 & 2)-Ministry of Presidency 2018
Awards Received:
  • Award:
    Commonwealth Peace Award
    Awarding Organization:
    Faith in the Commonwealth
    Date Awarded:
    February 18, 2019
  • Award:
    Outstanding Women Award
    Awarding Organization:
    Human Rights and Social Justice Commission, Diocese of Guyana
    Date Awarded:
    March 8, 2018
  • Award:
    SRHR Adventures #1 Volunteer
    Awarding Organization:
    SRHR Adventures
    Date Awarded:
    January 26, 2019
75 Public Votes Reached!
Yvonne champions family planning by using storytelling for sensitization. Her voice has also been echoed on radio and TV. She recently coordinated and successfully executed a three months awareness programme for female adolescents. – Patricee Douglas, Founder/Medical Doctor at SRHR Adventures
Describe your contributions to and achievements in family planning.

I have coordinated educational outreaches for primary stakeholders, the most recent is the Parushi Club ‘where girls blossom into kickass women’. The Parushi club is a social program that provided empowerment and social awareness for three months to female adolescents of Buxton community within the ages of 10-19. At the weekly 2hr engagements, noticeably the participants' confidence and self awareness grew. Reflective sessions strengthened the team for the financial literacy, sexual health and gender based violence discussions that followed.A candid space was provided to discuss and understand the benefits of family planning and the myths associated with contraceptive methods. 38 girls graduated after their participation over this 3 month period.

What sparked your passion for family planning?

The open secret of my playmate ‘Mal’ being robbed of her childhood was fostered by silence and ignorance. Mal mothered her 4 siblings, this increased to 7 by her 14th birthday. Her mom was frequently absent, as security jobs went long hours. “Whenever mom returned, it was a big belly”, they laughed. The role of motherhood was Mals’, her cooking duties scared her with first degree burns. Her poor school attendance and the absence of ‘sperm donors’ continued the cycle of poverty.

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

Confidence and Inspiration are prominent during my programmes. It took great confidence to lead a team as we planned, molded and executed the pilot project ‘Parushi club’ successfully. I do believe that this energy encouraged the girls to be bold with their speech. Participants were engaged and inspired by optimism, they shared their thoughts of reproductive health and the stigma in their community. The trust and confidently built led to mentoring. Girls recognized they can be more than moms.

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? :

Indigenous communities have limited access to information and services. I will use my platform to coordinate a health caravan programme in collaboration with Mother’s Union Parenting Programme and the Reducing Adolescence Pregnancy in Guyana project. An educational outreach along with the distribution of condoms and implants will take place. This population health programme aims to create an understanding of family planning and the effects of early childbearing.

Photos of the nominee in the field/at work
Discussing financial literacy to girls at Parushi Club Sharing family planning methods and how men can be involved at Men’s Breakfast Facilitating a session with Buxton Girls Guide

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