Yes, the app has been developed and is functional. Young people can download it from google play store and then get registered on the app. When they log in to the app, they can either find a YFS provider by location or by services. The google mapping functionality makes it possible to find a center close to their location. When they have received any service, they can rate and post a review on the service they have received. We are still working through the challenges we listed. We are holding FGDs with young people to inform changes we can make and other approaches we can take to make the app more user friendly as well as reach more young people in Nigeria with this innovation. We are also working with volunteers and peer marketers to get more young people to download and get facilities to upload their locations.
Thanks for the feedback. Firstly, LinkUp is a unique app in Nigeria, currently there are no other apps designed specifically to connect adolescents and young people to youth friendly SRH service delivery points and allows them to rate the services received. The app also makes it possible for youth friendly SRH facilities to upload their information. The upload is vetted and verified before it is accepted.
Education as a Vaccine (EVA) has a long standing partnership with the Federal Ministry of Health(FMOH) and States Ministry of Health in the different states we work. The organization is a member of the Adolescent Health Technical Working Group led by the FMOH. The representatives of FMOH were part of the consultations that led to the development of the app and the content. They were also part of the dissemination of the app after it was developed. So was UNFPA Nigeria because of their focus on reaching adolescent and young people with SRHR information and increasing the uptake of health services. They have supported our work in using this app and other technology platforms we have developed to reach adolescents and young people with SRH information and services.
Other stakeholders include other CSOs working on ASRHR in Nigeria who interested in how the platform can complement their work. Representatives from the Ministry of Health have also demonstrated interest in the use of the app to educate adolescents and young people. IPAS has also invited to EVA share the apps with the persons living with disabilities that they work with. They will also be partnering with us to upgrade the information on safe abortion and post abortion care to reach more adolescents and young people. Additionally, health facilities that are already listed on the app both government owned and private from states across the six geopolitical zones, and peer marketers who disseminate the app among their peers in their communities and circle of influence are partners in this effort. To answer the second question, The app has already been developed, we are currently in the dissemination phase. Link Up was launched earlier this year. Over 100 facilities have been uploaded to the app and we are still in the process of uploading more facilities. Peer marketers have been engaged to help create awareness about the app and disseminate the app at the community level, which involves getting more young people to download and use the app. We are holding focus group discussions with the young people reached. We are utilizing the feedback from adolescents and young people and stakeholders to improve the functionality and user experience of the app. through the peer marketers and stakeholders. Lastly, In our context, improved quality of SRH services young people receive at facilities is based on indicators set by the National Standards and Minimum Service Package for Adolescent and Youth-Friendly Health Services in Nigeria. This document is meant to serve as a national guideline for youth friendly health service delivery in all facilities for young people. As part of the TWG on Adolescent Health, we were part of the organizations that made inputs into the process of developing these guidelines, ensuring that the peculiarities of young people in terms of young people's SRH were taken into consideration. This standard includes providing an enabling environment in the communities to provide quality services, young people in the community being aware of services the health facilities provide, young people finding the environment, setting and procedures appealing and acceptable, providing equitable and rights-based services, ensuring privacy and confidentiality as well as management systems in place for quality assurance and improvement.
Increase in access for us means an increase in the number of young people who uptake youth friendly services at these health facilities, and not an increase in the number of health facilities in the communities. These facilities already exist but young people do not use the services due to factors such as distance, finances, lack of awareness and non youth-friendliness of the facilities. If facilities adhere to the minimum standards and become more youth friendly it is more likely that more young people will uptake relevant services particularly SRH services from these facilities.