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UNESCO HIV and Health Education Clearinghouse

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  1. Coming of age in the classroom: religious and cultural barriers to comprehensive sexuality education

    This paper elucidates evidence which underscores anxieties and panic about sexuality and sexual behaviour of young people influenced by movements advancing a distinct religious identity, and the implications for advocacy on advancing Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR). Synthesised in this document is evidence from two countries - Bangladesh and India - on Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE), an area of controversy (to varying degree) in both countries. Evidence from each country stem from national studies on the influence of religion on CSE, and are qualitative in nature. …

  2. Charting the future: empowering girls to prevent early pregnancy

    This report begins with a situation analysis of adolescent pregnancy (Section 2), highlighting where today’s adolescents live and where their fertility levels are highest, as well as looking at the drivers of their fertility rates. Section 3 provides a more detailed discussion of the multiple barriers that girls face in controlling their fertility. Section 4 presents our conclusions about the main drivers of adolescent pregnancy and introduces our policy and programming recommendations, which can be found in Section 5. …

  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. Sexuality education approaches: what would be applicable to North of Africa and Middle East?

    In this paper, Middle East and North of Africa are not presented from demographic dimension, rather from cultural one, where the most dominant religion is is Islam. Consequently, the paper will discuss applicability of sex education approaches from Islamic perspectives but within the Middle East and North of Africa context.

  5. Overlooked and at Risk: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Youth in the Caribbean

    As long as criminalization of homosexuality and stigma, discrimination and violence against LGBT individuals continues in the Caribbean, the emotional and physical health of LGBT young people is at risk. All young people have the right to be treated equally under the law and to live free of discrimination and harassment. Organizations, governments, and individuals must work toward full acceptance and recognition of LGBT people, including young people.

  6. 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. …

  7. HIV education in South African schools: the dilemma and conflicts of educators

    Educators within the school system are well placed to facilitate the dissemination of knowledge and skills in order for adolescents to be equipped for appropriate sexual decision-making. The aim of this research was to provide an understanding of educators' beliefs, attitudes and behaviours with regard to sexual and reproductive health promotion. Methods: Individual interviews were conducted with 15 educators from demographically diverse high schools in the Western Cape. One-off interviews were conducted with Grade 8 Life Orientation educators and principals. …

  8. 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. …

  9. Conversations in equity and social justice: constructing safe schools for queer youth

    The paper is a critique of discourse focused on at-risk behaviour and homophobic bullying. The paper argues that conversations around homophobic bullying must include discussions of doing equity and achieving social justice, in which the ultimate goal of constructing safe schools is achieved through the utter transformation of school culture. Failure to do anything less continues to license homophobia and makes predictable and inevitable violence against queer youth. …

  10. The sexual and reproductive health of younger adolescents. Research issues in developing countries

    This paper reviews quantitative and qualitative evidence on adolescents' sexual and reproductive health from a number of developing countries and, where possible, highlights findings for boys and girls aged under 15 years in those studies where findings are disaggregated by age and sex (which is not always the case). The evidence is sporadic, however, and is by no means representative of all developing countries. …

  11. Understanding Women's HIV Risk Perception in Postsocialist Georgia: Role of Knowledge, Behavioral, and Contextual Factors

    This dissertation explores the influences of HIV knowledge, health behaviors, and context-specific socioeconomic and sociocultural factors on HIV perceived risk among women in the Republic of Georgia. For effective HIV/AIDS prevention, individuals who perceive themselves at some risk of contracting HIV are more likely to reduce risk behaviors. Theories of health behavior incorporate perceived risk as an important component of HIV prevention, but they fail to incorporate factors influencing that risk perception. …

  12. These days virginity is just a feeling: heterosexuality and change in young urban Vietnamese men

    This paper argues that young Vietnamese men's beliefs around women's changing sexual identities and habits generate some anxiety around their own heterosexual abilities, while contributing to growing doubts around 'traditional' masculine advantage within sexual relations. It explores this notion in regard to eight Vietnamese men aged 18-30 years, interviewed over 13 months of fieldwork in Hanoi, Vietnam. …

  13. Delaying sexual debut amongst out-of-school youth in rural southwest Uganda

    This paper focuses on sexual debut among out-of-school youth in Masaka District, Uganda; factors influencing its timing; and assistance young people feel they need to delay sexual initiation. Data were drawn from a needs assessment using applied anthropological techniques with young people ages 13-19 years. Parents, guardians, and community leaders were also consulted. All participants felt that young people begin their sexual lives too early. Young men feel under pressure from friends and older men to prove their masculinity. …

  14. National teacher training HIV needs assessment Malawi, 2008

    The Theatre for a Change Teacher Training HIV Needs Assessment Survey was carried out in June, 2008, in Malawi's nine Teacher Training Colleges (TTCs) and the teacher training department of Mzuzu University. A total of 754 pre-service teachers were sampled for the survey, with data triangulated through three research tools: questionnaires, semi-structured interviews (SSIs) and activity-based workshops. …

  15. Growing up and sexual maturation among the Luo of Kenya: removing barriers to quality education

    This document was written to follow up the exploratory studies undertaken by the Quality Education for Social Transformation (QUEST) programme in Kenya, Uganda and Zimbabwe. To develop instructional materials on the process of growing up and sexual maturation for use in teacher education institutions and primary schools, the Maseno University research team conducted a study to establish the traditional ways of growing up and sexual maturation (GUSM) among four generations of the Luo (one of the main ethnic communities in Kenya). …

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