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Panel discussion held on “substance use and risky sexual behavior” at Jimma University.

March 1, 2019: Jimma University in collaboration Fayyaa Integrated Development Organization organized one-day panel discussion on substance use and risky sexual behavior among Jimma town public and private high schools and colleges. The primary aim of the panel discussion is to create awareness on the issues with primary stakeholders; High school directors, gender and HIV/AIDS/SRH focal persons, Jimma town education bureau, Jimma town health office and Fayyaa integrated development organization.

The panel discussion was opened by Dr. Tsige Ketema, Vice president for research and community services at Jimma University. In her speech, she highlighted that the current worry over substance use, HIV and sexual and reproductive health problems among Jimma town high school students is evidenced by different studies. She also emphasized the role of schools, teachers, and researches in combating HIV/AIDs, the substance in adolescents and youths. Dr. Tsige also expressed that Jimma University is committed to supporting further research and related community services on these areas. Finally, she acknowledged the team who organized the panel discussion and presented the research.

Following her opening remarks, Mr. Fikru from JU HAPCO also addressed the current epidemic of substance use and risky sexual behaviors in the town. He also expressed the commitment of his office to combat these problems by organizing different community-oriented programs by collaborating with health, offices education offices and other stakeholders. During the panel discussion, two research papers were presented on the issue of HIV and reproductive health. The participants held discussion on the issues raised by the presenters and it was recommended that further research and dialogue should be undertaken to combat the problems.

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