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UNESCO HIV and Health Education Clearinghouse

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  1. Probing the politics of comprehensive sexuality education: ‘Universality’ versus ‘Cultural Sensitivity’: a Dutch–Bangladeshi collaboration on adolescent sexuality education

    As part of Western European development aid policy, comprehensive sexuality education (CSE) is increasingly promoted in resource-poor countries. This paper engages with CSE promotion in Bangladesh funded by the Dutch Government. It unpacks the ‘collaboration’ by looking at how a paradox is played out between the universal ideals underlying a broader transnational rights-approach and the intended cultural sensitivity by adapting CSE to the targeted context. …

  2. Dating and sex among emerging adults in Nepal

    Social and cultural changes in Nepal, including better communication facilities and transport, more urbanization and a rising age at which people marry, have created more opportunities for young people for “dating.” This qualitative study explores whether the existence of dating cultures influences young people’s sexual behavior in Nepal. Focus group discussions with a total of 75 participants and 31 in-depth individual interviews were conducted among young people in Nepal. Most urban and rural young people liked the dating culture. …

  3. Customary adolescent sexual practices among the Akha of northern Lao PDR: considerations for public health

    Based on interviews and focus group discussions conducted in northern Laos, this study explores Akha understandings of customary first pre-pubertal sex acts, a thonh thong (‘break through vagina’ [BV]) for girls and yaha heu (‘open foreskin’ [OF]) for boys, which are thought to enable the maturing of bodies into adulthood. The study also examines the practice of a thor ta yang (‘Welcome Guest’) in which sexually initiated girls have sex with male visitors to Akha villages. The study found that many young women experience BV as painful and traumatic. …

  4. Knowledge, attitudes and practices concerning HIV/AIDS among Iranian at-risk sub-populations

    This study in 2003 looked at knowledge, attitudes and behaviours concerning HIV among 3 high-risk groups (201 cross-border truck drivers, 50 female sex workers and 754 youths) in 4 cities in the Islamic Republic of Iran. The level of knowledge about HIV was low on average, especially among individuals with high-risk behaviours. Truck drivers and female sex workers had higher knowledge about sexually transmitted infections than youths but their knowledge came primarily from personal experience rather than public awareness programmes. …

  5. Gender relations and sexual communication among female students in the Mekong River Delta of Vietnam

    Young women's ability to pursue a safer-sex life in line with their wishes is crucial to their sexual health. Although some previous observations have suggested that young women's lack of ability to negotiate safer sex is due to gender power imbalances in the culture of Vietnam, studies that have tested this hypothesis explicitly and quantitatively are few and far between. The present study aimed to test the association between perceived gender relations and perceived self-efficacy in communicating sexual matters among undergraduate female students in the Mekong River Delta of Vietnam. …

  6. 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. …

  7. Evaluating the need for sex education in developing countries: sexual behaviour, knowledge of preventing sexually transmitted infections/HIV and unplanned pregnancy

    The document is an article called "Evaluating the need for sex education in developing countries: sexual behaviour, knowledge of preventing sexually transmitted infections/HIV and unplanned pregnancy" and published in the review "Sex education" in November 2005. It was written by Susheela Singh, Akinrinola Bankole and Vanessa Woog. …

  8. Socio-cultural aspects of menstruation in an urban slum in Delhi, India

    The paper attempts to understand the experience of menstruation in the socio-cultural context of an urban Indian slum. Observations were gathered as part of a larger study of reproductive tract infections in women in Delhi, using both qualitative and quantitative methods.

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