The Peruvian Institute of Responsible Parenting (INPPARES, Instituto Peruano de Paternidad Responsable) has always understood that quality of life includes physical, psychological and social aspects of well-being; therefore, we take the view that adolescent reproductive health cannot be improved without addressing other youth concerns. In Peru, as in other parts of the world, finding work is a major concern of young people. There is a lack of jobs, and the traditional education system is not helpful for those seeking work in business. As INPPARES worked with young people, we found them asking for assistance in developing job skills and finding work.
Two years ago, INPPARES formed an alliance with the Integrated Collective of Development, a nongovernmental organization which provides business training, and started a project to provide reproductive health services along with professional training. The program reaches poor urban youth aged 17-28, the majority of whom have dropped out of school, in the zones of Lima, Huancayo and Cuzco. It supports the development of self-esteem, provides sexual and reproductive health services in accordance with young people’s needs and values, and promotes strategic skills development that allows young people to earn an income. The program holistically addresses the needs of youth, empowering young people within the context of respect and equity between the genders. Since 1997, over 30,000 youth have sought the program’s services.