The Youth Health Mobile App has currently been accessed by nearly 50,000 people across Cambodia, with most users residing in Phnom Penh, and Siem Reap and Kampong Cham provinces, according to the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport.

Ministry of Education spokesman Ros Soveacha said 46,000 users across the Kingdom had registered for the app, with 27,217 from 117 target high schools in the capital and Siem Reap, Kampong Cham, Tbong Khmum, Stung Treng, Kratie, Oddar Meanchey, Mondulkiri and Ratanakkiri provinces.

“The Ministry of Education and partner organisations set up this mobile application having seen that young people in early sexual contact may be at risk of unplanned pregnancies and unsafe abortions due to limited knowledge and access to healthcare.

“The Youth Health Mobile App contains 16 content modules developed by the ministry’s School Health Department. Most users reside in Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Kampong Cham,” Soveacha said.

The app is free, with the modules covering a wide range of topics related to sexual and reproductive health in the Khmer language for teens and young adults, as well as on gender, mental health and psychological support.

The ministry developed the app in response to the growing need for access to accurate and comprehensive sexual health information among young people in Cambodia.

“In this digital age, teenagers can easily watch inappropriate videos on their mobile phones, affecting their understanding of sex, while their knowledge about safe sex and preventing HIV transmission is limited.

“Not yet having had access to comprehensive sexual and reproductive health information from formal education or their parents, the mobile app addresses young people’s need for access to information and services on sexual and reproductive health, as well as gender and mental health support.

“The app aims to help young people better understand their rights and choices by providing them with the information and resources they need to make informed decisions about their health and wellbeing,” Soveacha said.

With financial support from the Japanese government, the Ministry of Education is committed to working on the joint project implementing digital sex education and developing innovative communication initiatives.

The project is funded by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the Japanese government.

According to the ministry, the UNFPA in Cambodia has stated that the Youth Health mobile app is targeted at young people in and out of school, allowing them to access information on sexual and reproductive health. The app is approved by the ministry.

“The app is designed to make it easier for young people to access information on a wide range of reproductive health topics in line with the sex education curriculum integrated into the national curriculum, so it is essential for students from Grade 5 to Grade 12,” the Ministry of Education said.

The Youth Health Mobile App is a joint project between the Ministry of Education, the National Youth Development Council, Child Helpline Cambodia and Kawsang Co, Ltd.

The app is available for free on both Android and iOS devices. To download the app, users can search for “Youth Health” in the App Store or Google Play.