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UNESCO HIV and Health Education Clearinghouse

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

    A seven-year randomized evaluation suggests education subsidies reduce adolescent girls’ dropout, pregnancy, and marriage but not sexually transmitted infection (STI). The government’s HIV curriculum, which stresses abstinence until marriage, does not reduce pregnancy or STI. Both programs combined reduce STI more, but cut dropout and pregnancy less, than education subsidies alone. …

  2. A farewell to abstinence and fidelity? Comment

    Sex has regularly proven to be a polarising issue for the UN Member States, and the 2016 High-Level Meeting on Ending AIDS on June 8–10 was no exception. The Political Declaration adopted at the meeting addresses the sexual health needs of young people (15–24 years), including adolescents (11–19 years). 2000 new HIV infections occur among young people every day. HIV is the leading cause of death among adolescents in Africa, and the second-highest cause of death worldwide in this age group. …

  3. School-based interventions for preventing HIV, sexually transmitted infections, and pregnancy in adolescents (Review)

    Background: School-based sexual and reproductive health programmes are widely accepted as an approach to reducing high-risk sexual behaviour among adolescents. Many studies and systematic reviews have concentrated on measuring effects on knowledge or self-reported behaviour rather than biological outcomes, such as pregnancy or prevalence of sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Objectives: To evaluate the effects of school-based sexual and reproductive health programmes on sexually transmitted infections (such as HIV, herpes simplex virus, and syphilis), and pregnancy among adolescents.

  4. Rising school enrollment and declining HIV and pregnancy risk among adolescents in Rakai district, Uganda, 1994–2013

    Background: Poverty, family stability, and social policies influence the ability of adolescents to attend school. Likewise, being enrolled in school may shape an adolescent’s risk for HIV and pregnancy. We identified trends in school enrollment, factors predicting school enrollment (antecedents), and health risks associated with staying in or leaving school (consequences). Methods: Data from the Rakai Community Cohort Study (RCCS) were examined for adolescents 15–19 years (n = 21,735 person-rounds) from 1994 to 2013. …

  5. The case for addressing gender and power in sexuality and HIV education: a comprehensive review of evaluation studies

    CONTEXT: Curriculum-based sexuality and HIV education is a mainstay of interventions to prevent STIs, HIV and unintended pregnancy among young people. Evidence links traditional gender norms, unequal power in sexual relationships and intimate partner violence with negative sexual and reproductive health outcomes. However, little attention has been paid to analyzing whether addressing gender and power in sexuality education curricula is associated with better outcomes. …

  6. Sex and HIV education programs: Their impact on sexual behaviors of young people throughout the world

    This paper reviews 83 studies that measure the impact of curriculum-based sex and HIV education programs on sexual behavior and mediating factors among youth under 25 years anywhere in the world. Two thirds of the programs significantly improved one or more sexual behaviors. The evidence is strong that programs do not hasten or increase sexual behavior but, instead, some programs delay or decrease sexual behaviors or increase condom or contraceptive use. …

  7. Evaluation of HIV/AIDS prevention through peer education, counselling, health care, training and urban refuges in Ghana

    Since 1996, Ireland Aid has supported UNICEF Ghana in the implementation of five activities that promote behaviour change to limit the spread of HIV/AIDS and STIs. The interventions are run by different local organisations, and have provided over 75,000 in and out-of-school youth and commercial sex workers with preventive education. People retained the information given, are knowledgeable about how HIV is transmitted, and can name key preventive methods. They pass on the information to their friends. Commercial sex workers were empowered to support one another in negotiating for safer sex. …

  8. Teacher training and HIV/AIDS prevention in West Africa: regression discontinuity design evidence from the Cameroon

    The authors assess the impact on teenage childbearing as well as student knowledge, attitudes, and behavior of a typical HIV/AIDS teacher training program in the Cameroon. Applying a regression discontinuity design identification strategy based on the key administrative criterion that determined program deployment, they find that 15–17 year old girls in teacher training schools are between 7 and 10 percentage points less likely to have started childbearing, an objective proxy for the incidence of unprotected sex. …

  9. The effect of educational attainment and other factors on HIV risk in South African women: results from antenatal surveillance, 2000-2005

    Objectives: To assess the effect of educational attainment and other factors on the risk of HIV in pregnant South African women. Design: Repeated cross-sectional surveys. Methods: Pregnant women attending public antenatal clinics were tested for HIV annually between 2000 and 2005, and provided demographic information. Logistic regression models were applied separately to the data collected in each year, to identify factors associated with HIV infection. Data from all years were combined in a logistic regression model that tested for trends in HIV prevalence. …

  10. Do teenagers respond to HIV risk information? Evidence from a field experiment in Kenya

    We use a randomized experiment to test whether and what information changes teenagers' sexual behavior in Kenya. Providing information on the relative risk of HIV infection by partner's age led to a 28 percent decrease in teen pregnancy, an objective proxy for the incidence of unprotected sex. Self-reported sexual behavior data suggests substitution away from older (riskier) partners and toward same-age partners. In contrast, the official abstinence-only HIV curriculum had no impact on teen pregnancy. …

  11. HIV prevention through drugs and sex education in junior high schools in Bandung West Java: the teachers' perspective

    The aim of this report was to identify teachers' views on knowledge, skills and curriculum content needs; attitudes; self-efficacy; and beliefs regarding teaching reproductive health and drug education in their junior high schools, in order to identify whether such programs should be implemented. From February through April 2009, 133 teachers completed a survey documenting socio demographics, behavioral intention, perceived behavior control, content knowledge, school climate, reproductive health (RH) knowledge and school drug education (DE). …

  12. Sex Education and AIDS Education in the Schools: What States and Large School Districts Are Doing

    In the majority of states, sex education is mandatory or strongly recommended in public schools. Forty-eight states and most of the large school districts across the country support sex education, including about STIs and abstinence. Fewer districts and states make education on pregnancy prevention mandatory. Larger school districts cover a broader range of sex-related topics, especially related to preventing pregnancy, than state curricula. Such districts also provide greater support to instructors through curricula provision, training and other activities, than do states. …

  13. The application of Intervention Mapping in developing and implementing school-based sexuality and HIV/AIDS education in a developing country context: the case of Tanzania

    Effective sexuality and HIV/AIDS education programmes are needed to protect young people against HIV/AIDS and teenage pregnancy in Tanzania and other Sub-Saharan African countries. Using a theory- and evidence-based approach and adapting the programmes to local contexts, increases the effectiveness of these programmes. This paper describes and discusses the challenges and opportunities concerning the application of Intervention Mapping (IM) in the development and implementation of a sexuality and HIV/AIDS education programme targeting young people aged 12-14 in Tanzania. …

  14. In the absence of marriage: long-term concurrent partnerships, pregnancy, and HIV risk dynamics among South African young adults

    In KwaZulu/Natal, South Africa, where HIV prevalence is among the world's highest, a longitudinal qualitative study of partnership dynamics and HIV preventive behaviors was conducted. 47 young adults aged 18-24 participated in in-depth interviews, and 29 were re-interviewed 2 years later. Five analytical domains emerged: primary partnerships, love and romance; secondary partnerships; pregnancy/parenthood; condom use/prevention; and contextual influences, including schooling and future aspirations. …

  15. Non-consensual sex, school enrolment and education outcomes in South Africa

    Sexual violence is a significant problem in South Africa. Such encounters bring psychological trauma, social stigma, and the risk of pregnancy, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Existing qualitative research indicates that survivors have difficulty concentrating on school-work, with many reportedly losing interest and some leaving school. The relationship between these experiences and school enrolment and educational attainment has not been quantified in sub-Saharan Africa. …

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