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UNESCO HIV and Health Education Clearinghouse

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  1. Teenage pregnancy in Sierra Leone: priorities for a future research agenda

    This briefing paper summarises the state of current knowledge and programming on teenage pregnancy in Sierra Leone and identifies some key gaps. It goes on to propose a future research agenda on this issue that could be undertaken by SLRC and supported by Irish Aid under its new five-year strategy for Sierra Leone.

  2. Adaptation in practice: lessons from teenage pregnancy programmes in Sierra Leone

    Sierra Leone has one of the highest rates of teenage pregnancy in the world. Several recent research studies have generated evidence as to why. Drivers of this problem include lack of information, knowledge and skills among girls, their sexual partners and their families; weak institutions and services, such as health, education, social work and justice; poverty and girls’ limited access to assets; widespread sexual violence and exploitation, for which there is both social and legal impunity; and engrained social and gender norms that make girls vulnerable to early sex and pregnancy. …

  3. Gaps in global monitoring and evaluation of adolescent and youth reproductive health: Research Brief

    Adolescents and youth are a key population for reproductive health (RH) interventions, because young people suffer disproportionately from negative RH outcomes, including acquisition of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections; unintended, unwanted, or mistimed pregnancy; unsafe abortion; and gender-based violence. Effective monitoring and evaluation (M&E) of RH interventions designed for adolescents and youth is essential to determine their success and impact and show where improvement is needed. …

  4. The impact of sex education mandates on teenage pregnancy: International evidence

    To date most studies of the impact of school-based sex education have focused either on specific, local interventions or experiences at a national level. In this paper, we use a new cross-country dataset to explore the extent to which laws on sex education affect teenage pregnancy rates in developed countries. We find some evidence that laws mandating sex education in schools are associated with higher rates of teenage fertility. Parental opt out laws may minimise adverse effects of sex education mandates for younger teens. …

  5. Adolescent and youth sexual and reproductive health and rights services: Key elements for implementation and scaling up in West and Central Africa

    This regional report entitled “Adolescent and Youth Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights Services - Key elements for implementation and scaling up in West and Central Africa” is complementary to the previous regional report on Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) and documents, through concrete examples from four West African countries (Benin, Côte d’Ivoire, Senegal and Togo), highlighting promising practices, lessons learnt, and proposing key recommendations to be shared with all countries in the region.

  6. The precocious period: the impact of early menarche on schooling in India

    Improvements in childhood nutrition increase schooling and economic returns in later life in a virtuous cycle. However, better nutrition also leads to an earlier onset of menstruation (menarche). In socio-cultural contexts where menarche adversely affects educational attainments, early menarche can thus break the virtuous cycle of girls’ human development. This paper focuses on one such context, India, and uses the Young Lives Longitudinal Study to show that starting menses before age twelve causes a 13% decrease in school enrollment rate. …

  7. Scaling-up normative change interventions for adolescent and youth reproductive health: an examination of the evidence

    Adolescent and youth reproductive health (AYRH) outcomes are influenced by factors beyond individual control. Increasingly, interventions are seeking to influence community-level normative change to support healthy AYRH behaviors. While evidence is growing of the effectiveness of AYRH interventions that include normative change components, understanding on how to achieve scale-up and wider impact of these programs remains limited. …

  8. The effects of adolescent childbearing on literacy and numeracy in Bangladesh, Malawi, and Zambia

    Global investments in girls’ education have been motivated, in part, by an expectation that more-educated women will have smaller and healthier families. However, in many low- and middle-income countries, the timing of school dropout and first birth coincide, resulting in a rapid transition from the role of student to the role of mother for adolescent girls. Despite growing interest in the effects of pregnancy on levels of school dropout, researchers have largely overlooked the potential effect of adolescent childbearing on literacy and numeracy. …

  9. Does schooling protect sexual health? The association between three measures of education and STIs among adolescents in Malawi

    While multiple studies have documented shifting educational gradients in HIV prevalence, less attention has been given to the effect of school participation and academic skills on infection during adolescence. …

  10. Bullying and school attendance: a case study of senior high school students in Ghana

    This paper focuses on senior high school students and the ways that bullying affects their school attendance. Selected items from the 2008 Ghana Global School-based Student Health Survey are analysed first to explore the relationships between the duration and type of bullying and school attendance. Second, the authors investigate whether having emotional problems, in addition to being bullied, incrementally affects the relationship between bullying and school attendance. Third, the authors explore the mitigating influence of peer friendships on these relationships. …

  11. Gaps in global monitoring and evaluation of adolescent and youth reproductive health

    Adolescents and youth are a key population for reproductive health (RH) interventions, because young people suffer disproportionately from negative RH outcomes, including acquisition of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections; unintended, unwanted, or mistimed pregnancy; unsafe abortion; and gender-based violence. Effective monitoring and evaluation (M&E) of RH interventions designed for adolescents and youth is essential to determine their success and impact and show where improvement is needed. …

  12. Violence against adolescent girls: trends and lessons for East Africa

    This report seeks to explore the unique experience of adolescent girls by examining the types of gender-based violence affecting this group as well as drivers of this violence, within the frame of high levels of gender inequality in South Sudan. Data for this study was collected as part of the research program of the What Works to Prevent Violence Against Women and Girls (‘What Works’) Consortium funded by the government of the United Kingdom (UK)’s Department for International Development (DfID). …

  13. From ideas to action: addressing barriers to comprehensive sexuality education in the classroom

    Evidence for the positive outcomes of comprehensive sexuality education (CSE) on adolescent sexual and reproductive health (ASRH) is well documented.

  14. I felt like the world was falling down on me. Adolescent girls’ sexual and reproductive health and rights in the Dominican Republic

    Adolescent girls in the Dominican Republic are being denied their sexual and reproductive rights, including access to safe abortion. “I Felt Like the World Was Falling Down on Me” documents how authorities have stalled the rollout of a long-awaited sexuality education program, leaving hundreds of thousands of adolescent girls and boys without scientifically accurate information about their health. The country has the highest teen pregnancy rate in Latin America and the Caribbean, according to the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO). …

  15. Adolescent bodily integrity and freedom from violence in Ethiopia. A report on GAGE Ethiopia baseline findings

    The report on adolescent bodily integrity and freedom from violence is one of a series of short baseline reports focused on emerging mixed-methods findings from the Gender and Adolescence: Global Evidence (GAGE) longitudinal study baseline data collection. […] Drawing on a gender and capabilities framework, the report focuses on adolescents’ experiences and perceptions of age-, sexual and gender-based violence in Ethiopia, paying particular attention to gender and regional differences in risks and access to services as well as those between adolescents with disabilities and those without.

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