Webinar: Youth Integration in HCD+ASRH

June 7, 2020


To discuss ‘What does it mean to engage youth meaningfully in HCD+ASRH programs?’ The webinar mapped out ways youth are integrated in the different stages of ASRH programs and the HCD process. It also explored how the HCD process facilitates meaningful youth engagement including the potential challenges that may come up.


Himanshu Kumar

HCDExchange Youth Leadership Associate 

Dr Anastasia Mirzoyants

Head of Learning and Knowledge, Shujaaz.inc  

Linet Michael

Junior Graphic Designer, Shujaaz Inc. 

Arzoo Gargl

Implementation and Training, YP Foundation

Heran Birhanu

Human Centered Designer, PSI Ethiopia 

Empowering youth to take control of their lives by identifying and breaking barriers – Shujaaz.inc


  • Shujaaz puts young people at the center of everything they do and encourages them to take leadership roles.
  • The introduction of the concept of play and gamification are used to better understand barriers, stereotypes, mindsets and  motivations of youth. The use of games and play creates an informal setting where youth can truly express themselves and how they feel.
  • The use of  role playing allows young people to share personal stories from a distance. This proves to be very helpful in discussing stigmatised topics.

Building capacity for young people in SRHR rights – YP Foundation


  • In the YP foundation, youth are not just participants, they are  professionals who have a say in the curriculum. 
  • Recognition of youth as participants inspires adolescents to become educators and start initiatives in their own communities,  to advocate for the rights of young people in their communities and families. 
  • Involving educators, teachers and parents  in curriculum drafting and  review addresses backlash that youth educators might  face.


Using HCD to bring in a youth perspective to the programs- PSI Ethiopia


  • Youth engagement improved  the effectiveness of the A360 program implementations and encouraged  youth to play an active role as planners of  the future of the program. 
  • The HCD process was used to build youth to youth relationships and interactions throughout the HCD process, and complement  young designers representation of youth perspectives. Having platforms to engage with other young designers helped designers  to strengthen their stance as youth advocates. 
  • The HCD process was used by young designers to voice their concerns and challenges to program decision-makers and leadership

Key Points

  • Gamification and concept of play can help us understand barriers faced by young people by creating room for them to open up and share.
  • Engaging youth as more than participants but as professionals can build their capacity and empower them to become advocates for young people in their communities and families.
  • Using HCD can increase the effectiveness of  program implementation by encouraging youth to play active roles. 

Follow-up Questions

  • What can be done to engage youth in long term HCD+ASRH programs?
  • How have the learnings from the young designers’ conference informed the creation of youth-adult partnerships in the Smart Start Ethiopia intervention?
  • How has human-centered design versus other approaches been used to inform better ASRH program outcomes?

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