Giving Compass' Take:

• PSI is championing the Huk Mi Plan, a project that creates on- and off-line spaces for women aged 15 to 35 to learn about reproductive health and services.

• One of the key learnings from this project is the importance of women leading female-focused development projects. Why is it critical for the individuals in charge of product creation to represent the target population?

• Read about this global approach to reproductive health. 

A crowd of young rugby players cluster around a table scattered with packs of Number One condoms and reproductive health brochures. They watch earnestly as a PSI Laos Interpersonal Communications Officer (IPC) demonstrates how to properly apply a condom, before pulling up a Facebook page on her mobile phone for what she introduces as the Huk Mi Plan project.

But as an IPC Officer explained that day: in Lao People’s Democratic Republic, an estimated two in five women and girls aged 15-24 want but don’t have access to modern contraception (an unmet need which is likely higher in reality). Taboos remain rampant, and sexual and reproductive health (SRH) information remains limited. The implications run deep – almost one in three girls will have had her first child by age 20.

That’s where Huk Mi Plan comes into play.

In partnership with the Ministry of Health and alongside young people, the PSI Laos-powered and Women’s Health Project-funded Huk Mi Plan delivers on- and off-line spaces for women aged 15-35 to gain the skills and knowledge to make the health choices that shape their lives.

And while Huk Mi Plan is continuing to learn, adapt, and grow, below are three applicable learnings that have led to our success, so far.

  • Lesson #1: Let Girls Lead: The young women and girls took on the role of project designers, brainstorming and prioritizing ideas for empowering youth to learn about sexual and reproductive health and rights information.
  • Lesson #2: When it comes to curating content, don’t just post. Personalize to your target audiences:  By incorporating data into Huk Mi Plan’s decision-making process, we can answer questions like when, where, and what messaging best targets the right Huk Mi Plan consumer.
  • Learning #3: From Awareness to Action: Translating awareness to action is a key objective in Huk Mi Plan’s platform integration.

Read the full article about three lessons in digital development projects by Lily O’Connell at psi.