Friday, October 3, 2014

What is a YPHEr? 3 Things You Need to Know about them

YPHEr is short for Youth Peer Health Educator. A YPHEr has been called other names like y-peers, ARK youth, young educators and other similar names. The YPHEr is part of a global movement that believes in harnessing the power of the youth to be social agents of change. Church groups and faith-based institutions can train YPHErs as part of their health ministry program. But what can a YPHEr do?

Here are 3 things you need to know about what a YPHEr:

1. A YPHEr is an educator.

He or she educates a fellow youth about health issues and concerns that greatly affects the youth today. The YPHEr has gained knowledge and skills about health issues affecting him/her. These health topics usually includes smoking and drinking alcohol; drug abuse; HIV,  AIDS and sexually transmitted disease; obesity and nutrition; and similar topics. The YPHEr can engage in casual conversation their peers about these common risky health behaviors and advocate for a healthy lifestyle.

2. A YPHEr is not a counselor.

Although a YPHEr has some skills and knowledge on health issues for the youth, they are not professionals that can give expert advice. However, YPHEr can always provide peer support and guidance to their fellow youth. A YPHEr is a friend ready to lend a listening ear to whoever needs it. If necessary, a YPHEr can assist his/her peer where to seek professional help when needed.

3. A YPHEr belongs to a group.

A YPHEr is never alone. He or she is part of a global movement of youth changing the health lifestyle of society. The YPHEr belong to the "good" pressure group as they advocate healthy lifestyle practices. They know there are many other young people that share their behavior and practices and they are part of that good crowd. With support from fellow YPHErs, the youth can better resist the temptations of risky-health behaviors.

A Youth Peer Health Educator program is one health ministry that you and your church can do. Ask around if there are workshops available for your youth group. You may also invite us to facilitate one for you.

There is one upcoming event in the next few weeks in Leyte.

Join us and be part of the YPHEr crowd.