Zambia: 26-year-old Laika Lizimu’s Story

Date of diary session: 7 May 2020

The situation is tough, the country is facing an economical crisis, movement restrictions, no unnecessary gatherings. I have been locked down with my family and it is really hectic, because it’s promoting stigma. We are no longer living the life of peace we had been living some years back.

The good thing is that we are free to access all sexual reproductive health products and services, including condoms. I have been actively supporting my family, friends and community by sensitising them about the symptoms, signs and precaution measures of COVID-19.

My work has not stopped

I’m a youth Facilitator who works with youths in schools, health centres and the community at large, so during this lockdown I did not stop the facilitation but I am doing it via social media, especially my Facebook. I also use SMS and WhatsApp for facilitation in terms of schooling. I am currently upgrading my studies at one of the universities in Zambia. However, I am doing both my work and studies through social media e-learning.

Missing church and outdoor games

I really miss church services, outdoor games and other gatherings like parties because they promote interaction among us as young people. My advice to other young people is that; the future for the next generation is now, eat healthy foods, do exercises and take a lot of liquids.

Even during this pandemic, I am very grateful for the efficient use of media for both work and studies.

About the #YouthAndCOVID19 Series

The UNFPA East and Southern Africa Regional Office through its flagship programme for youth, the Safeguard Young People programme, has been engaging with young people in the region to find out how they are coping with the current COVID-19 pandemic. The aim of the project is to share best practices among the youth and to expose them to the many interventions and responses to COVID-19 that UNFPA and its partners have put in place during this time.

– Lindiwe Siyaya

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