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UNESCO HIV and Health Education Clearinghouse

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  1. Pupil absenteeism, measurement, and menstruation: Evidence from Kenya

    Impact evaluations focused on school absenteeism commonly use school records of untested quality or expensive spot-check data. We use a large dataset on more than 30,000 unannounced random spot-checks for 6,000 female and male students across 30 schools in Western Kenya, with equivalent school record entries. First, we confirm that while absenteeism is common overall, pubescent girls miss more schooldays than boys because of high incidence of school transfers. …

  2. Break the barriers: girls' experiences of menstruation in the UK

    The UK is one of the richest countries in the world. But our latest report, Break the Barriers: Girls’ Experiences of Menstruation in the UK, reveals a culture of stigma and silence have turned periods into a hidden public health issue – putting girls' physical, sexual and mental health at risk. Across the UK and around the world, girls’ stories show that periods have been stigmatised for too long. …

  3. Aahung – empowering adolescents in Pakistan through life skills-based education

    Aahung, a Karachi-based sexual and reproductive health non-profit organization, has developed a life skills-based education (LSBE) program for school-going adolescent girls and boys. This intervention provides young people with skills and knowledge related to adolescent reproductive health, such as accurate information about puberty and related changes, marital rights, peer pressure, sexual harassment and body protection, gender inequities, early marriage, nutrition, self-confidence, decision-making, and communication skills. …

  4. The shrinking world of girls at puberty: violence and gender-divergent access to the public sphere among adolescents in South Africa

    Participatory mapping was undertaken with single-sex groups of grade 5 and grade 8–9 children in KwaZulu-Natal. Relative to grade 5 students, wide gender divergence in access to the public sphere was found at grade 8–9. With puberty, girls' worlds shrink, while boys' expand. At grade 5, female-defined community areas were equal or larger in size than those of males. Community area mapped by urban grade 8–9 girls, however, was only one-third that of male classmates and two-fifths that of grade 5 girls. Conversely, community area mapped by grade 8–9 boys was twice that of grade 5 boys. …

  5. WASH in schools empowers girls' education in Freetown, Sierra Leone: An assessment of menstrual hygiene management in schools

    From June through July 2012, Emory University and UNICEF collaborated in research aimed to understand the range of challenges faced by girls during menstruation in urban Freetown, as well as the determinants of those challenges. This report presents the methods, findings and key programmatic recommendations to address menstruation-related challenges among girls. More than 100 participants were engaged in eight schools and two communities, including teachers and girls, both in school and out of school.

  6. WASH in schools empowers girls’ education in Masbate Province and Metro Manila, Philippines: An assessment of menstrual hygiene management in schools

    Emory University, UNICEF Philippines, Plan Philippines and Save the Children Philippines carried out a qualitative assessment of menstruation-related challenges girls face in school. Girls, boys, teachers and mothers at 10 schools in Masbate Province and the National Capital Region were interviewed for their opinions. This report highlights the challenges girls face in school during menses, describes the determinants of these challenges, and outlines the educational and health impacts of these challenges as voiced by the participants. …

  7. The girl with her period is the one to hang her head. Reflections on menstrual management among schoolgirls in rural Kenya

    Background. The onset of menstruation is a landmark event in the life of a young woman. Yet the complications and challenges that can accompany such an event have been understudied, specifically in resource-poor settings. As interventions aim to improve female attendance in schools, it is important to explore how menstruation is perceived and navigated by girls in the school setting. This research conveys rural Kenyan schoolgirls' perceptions and practices related to menstruation. Methods. Data were collected at six rural schools in the Nyanza Province of Western Kenya. …

  8. Menstrual hygiene in South Asia: a neglected issue for WASH (water, sanitation and hygiene) programmes

    In total, women spend around six to seven years of their lives menstruating. A key priority for women and girls is to have the necessary knowledge, facilities and cultural environment to manage menstruation hygienically, and with dignity. Yet the importance of menstrual hygiene management is mostly neglected by development practitioners within the WASH (water, sanitation and hygiene) sector, and other related sectors such as reproductive health. …

  9. Having sex, becoming somebody: A qualitative study assessing (sexual) identity development of adolescents living with HIV/AIDS

    A growing number of adolescents are living with HIV/AIDS. For their well-being and for prevention, age- and culturally appropriate interventions become increasingly important. This qualitative study was conducted as the first step to develop a sexual and reproductive health (SRH) intervention. The study's objective was to assess the impact of HIV and related contextual conditions on identity formation of adolescents living with HIV/AIDS (ALH) in the domains of physical, cognitive, social, and sexual development. Data were collected using focus group discussions (FGDs). …

  10. Adolescent reproductive and sexual health: an exploration of trends in Pakistan

    A report on the study conducted by Pakistan Voluntary Health and Nutrition Association (PAVHNA) to find out adolescent perceptions regarding sexual and reproductive health. The study also aimed to assess the level of physical and sexual abuse in the society with reference to four provincial cities of Pakistan: Karachi, Quetta, Swabi, and Gujranwala.

  11. Sexualité des adolescents : tendances récentes en milieu rural sénégalais

    This study presents the trend with regard to age at first intercourse of men and women in rural Senegal. The start of the sexual life of men proved to be early for the young generations. The start of sexual life of women, on the contrary, appeared to be somewhat later, in one of the sites. These results confirm that of another study carried out in another rural zone in Senegal. The underlying factors seem to be the early puberty of boys, the contact with the urban culture through education, migration and the changes of norms with regard to sexuality. The rise of the age of marriage of men, combined with an earlier start of sexual life, leads to a longer period wherein the risk of non desired pregnancies exists. It is thus important to implicate boys in the prevention actions with regard to sexual and reproductive health.

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