David and Lucille Packard Foundation

This 2017, Youth LEAD will be embarking on a new project to mainstream family planning issues of young lesbians, gays, bisexuals, and transgender populations (LGBTs) through web series.

Family planning issues and access to services for many young LGBTs in the Philippines are somewhat not a priority. Based on informal discussions and anecdotes from civil society and LGBT colleagues in the Philippines, family planning needs of LGBTs come only as a ‘per-need’ basis, as there is no mainstream approach to address their family planning-related concerns. And if they do need to access such services, it is difficult to find an LGBT-friendly center because many existing family planning service facilities and service providers are not LGBT-friendly. While there are few, these access points are unknown to many young Filipino LGBTs.

This project demands inclusive education and services to protect the health and wellbeing of LGBT individuals, particularly younger LGBTs in the Philippines in the context of family planning. Using social media as the main hub to disseminate information, this project proposes to create a web series of online videos. The web series will aim to inform young LGBTs about their family planning issues and promote where they can access these services. To ensure that information on the web series relates to an increase in uptake to services, we will partner with LGBT-friendly health service providers and promote their services through the web series so that young LGBTs will be informed where and how to access needed family planning services. We will also partner with popular online publication sites as well as LGBT organizations to increase the web series’ penetration rate and viewership.

The web series is slated to launch in June 2017 in time for Pride Month.

Robert Carr for Civil Society Networks Fund

Youth LEAD is the only regional network in the world directly focusing on YKP and their needs, with large country presence and engagement. However, this is still not enough and grassroots and country-level initiatives must be strengthened to create a robust and sustainable movement. Youth LEAD is grateful for the support from Robert Carr Civil Society Network Fund (RCNF). Supporting Youth LEAD for two more years following the inaugural inception of the fund. The projects supported by Robert Carr Network Fund under Youth LEAD aimed to achieve a vision where the human rights of young key populations (YKP) are respected, and the impact of HIV and AIDS is mitigated through the meaningful involvement of YKP in gaining equal and equitable access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support.

The first phase of the funding saw Youth LEAD support 6 unique and innovative projects in 5 regional countries, ranging from collecting strategic information as an advocacy platform , to tracing stories of youth leadership and transformation , to mobile HIV testing in marginalized communities . All initiatives were led by young people with minimal cost and high impact. The results were astounding with great innovation and initiative from YKP; enhanced capacity building and confidence; fulfilling identified local service gaps and creating youth friendly settings; gaining first-hand technical experience on project management; strengthening advocacy and a base for activism and professionalism for dialogue with different stakeholders for better service provisions for YKP and YPLHIV. This can be regarded as a best practice example for Youth LEAD