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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. Cash transfers: magic bullet or fundamental ingredient?

    Comment on a study published in The Lancet Global Health by Audrey Pettifor and colleagues on cash transfers, school attendance and the reduction of HIV risk behaviours in adolescent girls.

  3. When caring is not enough: The limits of teachers’ support for South African primary school-girls in the context of sexual violence

    Between 2011 and 2012, 40.1% of all sexual offences in South Africa involved children under 18. Important scholarship has demonstrated how large-scale social and economic inequalities structure African girls’ risk to and experience of sexual violence leading to a condemnation of violent masculinities and the social processes that produce it. Under conditions of chronic poverty and unstable living conditions, girls’ vulnerability to sexual violence is increased. …

  4. Adolescent women’s need for and use of sexual and reproductive health services in developing countries

    With this report, the authors aim to provide an up-to-date and comprehensive overview of the use of sexual and reproductive health services by adolescent women aged 15–19 in the developing world. Using reliable nationally representative surveys in 70 countries, the report presents 30 indicators that cover a wide range of topics related to the sexual and reproductive health of adolescent women. Chapter 2 outlines the methods and data sources used for this report. Chapter 3 focuses on marriage, sexual activity and contraception. …

  5. Risk for coerced sex among female youth in Ghana: Roles of family context, school enrollment and relationship experience

    CONTEXT: A better understanding is needed of the variables that may influence the risk of experiencing coerced sex among adolescent females in Sub-Saharan Africa. METHODS: Data were collected from 700 female respondents who were interviewed in 2010 and 2012 waves of a longitudinal study of behavioral risk for HIV infection among youth aged 13–14 or 18–19 and living in two towns in southeastern Ghana. …

  6. HIV prevention in Southern Africa for young people with a focus on young women and girls in Botswana

    This review focuses on the major factors that drive HIV infection and explores interventions that have demonstrated effectiveness, as well as illustrating important learnings for programme development. Findings inform understanding of sex and sexuality in relation to HIV risk and the potentials for interventions in the Botswana context.

  7. Preventing sexual violence and HIV in children

    BACKGROUND: Evidence linking violence against women and HIV has grown, including on the cycle of violence and the links between violence against children and women. To create an effective response to the HIV epidemic, it is key to prevent sexual violence against children and intimate partner violence (IPV) against adolescent girls. …

  8. Adapting a multifaceted U.S. HIV prevention education program for girls in Ghana

    We adapted a U.S. HIV prevention program to address knowledge gaps and cultural pressures that increase the risk of infection in adolescent Ghanaian girls. The theory-based nine-module HIV prevention program combines didactics and games, an interactive computer program about sugar daddies, and tie-and-dye training to demonstrate an economic alternative to transactional sex. The abstinence-based study was conducted in a church-affiliated junior secondary school in Nsawam, Ghana. Of 61 subjects aged 10-14 in the prevention program, over two thirds were very worried about becoming HIV infected. …

  9. Education, HIV, and early fertility: experimental evidence from Kenya

    We provide experimental evidence on the relationships between education, HIV/AIDS education, risky behavior and early fertility in Kenya. We exploit randomly assigned variation in the cost of schooling and in exposure to the national HIV/AIDS prevention curriculum for a cohort of over 19,000 adolescents in Western Kenya, originally aged 13.5 on average. We collected data on the schooling, marriage, and fertility out-comes of these students over 7 years, and tested them for HIV and Herpes (HSV2) after 7 years. …

  10. Gender and sexual vulnerability of young women in Africa: experiences of young girls in secondary schools in Uganda

    Sexuality is part and parcel of students' experiences of schooling manifested in personal friendships, relations and social interaction. These encounters constitute sites within which sexual identities are developed, practiced and actively produced through processes of negotiation. Drawing on qualitative research conducted in 14 selected secondary schools in Central and Western Uganda, the study illuminates gendered sexual vulnerability within patterns of social interaction and young girls gendered experiences and negotiation of their sexuality. …

  11. Impact of HIV/AIDS education programmes on sexual behaviour of female students in Nigerian schools: Policy implications for scientific and technolgical development

    This study investigated the impact of HIV/AIDS education programmes on sexual behaviors of female students in senior secondary schools in Rivers State of Nigeria. The population for the study comprised of all senior secondary schools female students in Nigeria, which was divided into urban and rural schools. The sample size was 200 female students obtained by using stratified random sampling technique. …

  12. Jamaican Mothers' Influences of Adolescent Girls' Sexual Beliefs and Behaviors

    The purpose of this study was to identify the ways in which urban Jamaican mothers influence their adolescent daughters' sexual beliefs and behaviors in order to incorporate them into the design of a family-based, HIV risk-reduction intervention program. Focus groups were conducted with forty-six 14- to 18-year-old adolescent girls and 30 mothers or female guardians of adolescent girls recruited from community-based organizations in and around Kingston and St. Andrew, Jamaica. Separate focus groups were held with mothers and daughters; each included 6 to 10 participants. …

  13. Self-reported sexual behaviour among adolescent girls in Uganda: reliability of data debated

    The objective of this study was to compare self-reported information about sexual behavior in a research interview to information retrieved during a clinical consultation. Social workers interviewed 595 sexually experienced women below 20 years about genital symptoms and sexual behavior. A midwife interviewed and examined the women and took vaginal samples for gonorrhea and chlamydia. Four questions were embedded in both the social workers' interviews and among the midwife's questions. …

  14. Addressing sexual violence and HIV risk among married adolescent girls in rural Nyanza, Kenya

    HIV infection is much higher among adolescent girls in sub-Saharan Africa than among boys. In settings such as Nyanza Province, Kenya, rates of HIV infection are extremely high, and evidence is increasing in some settings that girls who are married are much more likely to be infected with HIV, compared with their unmarried sexually active counterparts. This brief describes a program addressing the problem of sexual violence and the risk of HIV transmission within marriage in Kenya's Nyanza Province. …

  15. Education and vulnerability: the role of schools in protecting young women and girls from HIV in southern Africa

    Education has a potentially important role to play in tackling the spread of HIV, but is there evidence that this potential is realized? This analysis combines the results of previous literature reviews and updates them with the findings of recent randomized controlled trials and a discussion of possible mechanisms for the effect of schooling on vulnerability to HIV infection. There is a growing body of evidence that keeping girls in school reduces their risk of contracting HIV. …

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