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UNESCO HIV and Health Education Clearinghouse

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  1. Learners’ perspectives on the provision of condoms in South African public schools

    A stubborn health challenge for learners in South African public schools concerns sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR). In 2015, the Department of Basic Education (DBE) proposed the provision of condoms and SRHR-services to learners in schools. This study aimed to contribute to the finalisation and implementation of DBE’s policy by exploring learners’ perspectives on the provision of condoms and SRHR-services in schools. …

  2. Accessing the ‘right’ kinds of material and symbolic capital: the role of cash transfers in reducing adolescent school absence and risky behaviour in South Africa

    This article investigates how well South Africa’s Child Support Grant (CSG) responds to the material and psychosocial needs of adolescents, and the resultant effects on schooling and risky behaviour. One driver of schooling decisions is shame related to poverty and the ‘social cost’ of school, where a premium must often be paid for fashionable clothes or accessories. The other driver relates to symbolic and consumptive capital gained through engaging in sexual exchange relationships. The anticipated impacts from the CSG are partial because of these non-material drivers of adolescent choices. …

  3. Efficacy of an American alcohol and hiv prevention curriculum adapted for use in South Africa: results of a pilot study in five township schools

    The high prevalence of HIV among young people in African countries underscores a pressing need for effective prevention interventions. Adapting school–based prevention programs developed in the United States for use in African schools may present an alternative to the time–consuming process of developing home–grown programs. The researchers report the results of a pretest–posttest field trial of an alcohol/ HIV prevention curriculum adapted from an American model and delivered to ninth-grade students in five South African township schools. …

  4. Child-focused state cash transfers and adolescent risk of HIV infection in South Africa: a propensity-score-matched case-control study

    Background: Effective and scalable HIV prevention for adolescents in sub-Saharan Africa is needed. Cash transfers can reduce HIV incidence through reducing risk behaviours. However, questions remain about their effectiveness within national poverty-alleviation programmes, and their effects on different behaviours in boys and girls. Methods: In this case-control study, we interviewed South African adolescents (aged 10–18 years) between 2009 and 2012. …

  5. Application of the information, motivation and behavioural skills model for targeting HIV risk behaviour amongst adolescent learners in South Africa

    This paper discusses the application of an information, motivation and behavioural skills (IMB) model in a school-based programme for the reduction of HIV risk behaviour among 259 Grade 11 learners in two high schools in Alexandra township, Johannesburg. School 1 was the Experimental group, while School 2 was the Control group. After a baseline study (Time 1) at both schools, a 3-week intervention programme was conducted at School 1. A post-test (Time 2) was conducted at both schools. The intervention was repeated at School 2, followed by another post-test (Time 3) at both schools. …

  6. Survey on substance use, risk behaviour and mental health among grade 8-10 learners in Western Cape provincial schools, 2011

    In 2010/2011 the Provincial Government of the Western Cape (PGWC) in partnership with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) Southern Africa tasked the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Research Unit at the South African Medical Research Council with conducting a survey in order to determine the regional prevalence of drug and alcohol use, risk behaviours and mental health problems among school learners in grades 8-10. More specifically, the objectives of the study were: 1. …

  7. Young people's sexual health in South Africa: HIV prevalence and sexual behaviors from a nationally representative household surevy

    Objectives: To determine the prevalence of HIV infection, HIV risk factors, and exposure to national HIV prevention programs, and to identify factors associated with HIV infection among South African youth, aged 15–24 years. Design: A cross-sectional, nationally representative, household survey. Methods: From March to August 2003 we conducted a national survey of HIV prevalence and sexual behavior among 11 904 15–24 year olds. Multivariable models for HIV infection were restricted to sexually experienced youth. …

  8. HIV infection and sexual risk behaviour among youth who have experienced orphanhood: systematic review and meta-analysis

    Background: Previous research has suggested that orphaned children and adolescents might have elevated risk for HIV infection. We examined the state of evidence regarding the association between orphan status and HIV risk in studies of youth aged 24 years and younger. Methods: Using systematic review methodology, we identified 10 studies reporting data from 12 countries comparing orphaned and non-orphaned youth on HIV-related risk indicators, including HIV serostatus, other sexually transmitted infections, pregnancy and sexual behaviours. …

  9. Gender, peer and partner influences on adolescent HIV risk in rural South Africa

    In preparation for a school-based intervention in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, the authors conducted a cross-sectional survey of potential HIV risk factors in youth ages 14–17 (n=983). Boys were significantly more likely than girls to report lifetime sexual activity (37.7% v. 13.8%, P<0.01). Among boys and girls, 46.1% reported condom use at last sex. Discussion of condom use with a partner was the strongest predictor of condom use (boys, odds ratio (OR)=7.39; girls, OR=5.58, P<0.0001). …

  10. Scrutinize campaign: a youth HIV prevention campaign addressing multiple and concurrent partnerships

    Launched on South African television in June 2008, the Scrutinize Campaign was a year-long series of HIV prevention ads targeting multiple and concurrent sexual partnerships. Irreverent and humorous, with strong, colorful visuals, the campaign's ads were markedly different from previous South African HIV prevention campaigns for youth. Rather than telling the audience what to do, the Scrutinize campaign messaging encouraged those in the audience to scrutinize their own behavior, resulting in dramatic uptake of key HIV prevention messages.

  11. Adolescent HIV: cause for concern in Southern Africa

    There is a substantial burden of HIV infection in adolescents in southern Africa who acquired HIV perinatally. It is evident that they contribute substantially to hospital admissions and in-hospital deaths. There is an urgent need for services that will be able to provide accessible and appropriate HIV testing, counseling, and support, as well as facilitate access to ART and appropriate sexual risk-reduction interventions. …

  12. Young people's understanding of HIV: a qualitative study among school students in Mankweng, South Africa

    This article describes young people's interpretation of HIV, AIDS and sexually transmitted illness in a rural South African community in Mankweng, Limpopo Province. Method: The study was based on 19 focus group discussions with adolescents aged 12-14 years. Results: Our participants had limited knowledge about HIV from a biomedical perspective. Their understanding and interpretations of HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases were largely informed by traditional and religious belief systems that explain how and why people contract an illness via sexual intercourse. …

  13. Social outcome expectations regarding delayed sexual debut among adolescents in Mankweng, South Africa

    Aims: To describe outcome expectations related to delayed sexual transition, to examine the dimensionality and internal consistency of such expectations, and to examine variations in social outcome expectations across subgroups defined by demographic variables, indicators of socioeconomic status and predictors related to school and educational ambitions. Methods: Data stem from a survey among school students (grades 8-12) in Mankweng, Limpopo, South Africa (n=5,697). …

  14. I am not "umqwayito'': a qualitative study of peer pressure and sexual risk behaviour among young adolescents in Cape Town, South Africa

    Young people in South Africa are susceptible to HIV infection. They are vulnerable to peer pressure to have sex, but little is known about how peer pressure operates. The aim of the study was to understand how negative peer pressure increases high risk sexual behaviour among young adolescents in Cape Town, South Africa. Qualitative research methods were used. Eight focus groups were conducted with young people between the ages of 13 and 14 years. …

  15. The impact of life skills education on adolescent sexual risk and behaviors

    To measure the effects of exposure to topics within the life skills curriculum on sexual and reproductive health knowledge and behaviors among youth, the University of Natal-Durban School of Development Studies, Horizons, The Population Council's Policy Research Division, and Tulane University undertook a prospective study in KwaZulu Natal Province, South Africa, from 1999 to 2001. This summary considers the impact of the life skills program on a population-based sample of youth in two districts in the province.

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