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UNESCO HIV and Health Education Clearinghouse

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  1. Adolescent schoolgirls’ experiences of menstrual cups and pads in rural western Kenya: a qualitative study

    Poor menstrual hygiene management (MHM) among schoolgirls in low income countries affects girls' dignity, self-esteem, and schooling. Hygienic, effective, and sustainable menstrual products are required. A randomized controlled feasibility study was conducted among 14-16-year-old girls, in 30 primary schools in rural western Kenya, to examine acceptability, use, and safety of menstrual cups or sanitary pads. Focus group discussions (FGDs) were conducted to evaluate girls' perceptions and experiences six months after product introduction. …

  2. 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. …

  3. Turning inside out

    UNESCO in partnership with Ministry of Education and with financial support from the Government of the Republic of Azerbaijan, community and Civil society organizations implemented a two year Health Literacy and Behaviour Change practices among Adolescent Girls pilot project from September 2014-September 2017 in 41 schools. Health literacy materials were evaluated and approved by Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (K.I.C.D.) for use in other informal settlements. This is a story aimed at what we call ‘level 1’ (ages 10-12). …

  4. Growing up and changing : knowing about puberty for girls

    UNESCO in partnership with Ministry of Education and with financial support from the Government of the Republic of Azerbaijan, community and Civil society organizations implemented a two year Health Literacy and Behaviour Change practices among Adolescent Girls pilot project from September 2014-September 2017 in 41 schools. Health literacy materials were evaluated and approved by Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development for use in other informal settlements. This is a one sheet brochure for an intended audience of girls approaching puberty.

  5. Knowing about puberty for boys

    UNESCO in partnership with Ministry of Education Kenya and with financial support from the Government of the Republic of Azerbaijan, community and Civil society organizations implemented a two year Health Literacy and Behaviour Change practices among Adolescent Girls pilot project from September 2014-September 2017 in 41 schools. Health literacy materials were evaluated and approved by Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development for use in other informal settlements. This is a one sheet brochure for an intended audience of boys approaching puberty.

  6. Aunt Martha

    This is is a story for pupils/students at what we call ‘level 2’ (ages 13-14). It deals with the issues of negative traditional practices (female genital mutilation) on girls and the resulting medical problems, and with early marriage and early pregnancy and making the right choices. The story features a sensitive conversation between a mother and daughter, Agnes, the daughter, learns about her aunt who has passed away, about empathy and about good relationships. Agnes’ father is supportive and a positive male role model, although he remains in the background. …

  7. WASH in schools empowers girls’ education: Proceedings of the 5th Annual Virtual Conference on Menstrual Hygiene Management in Schools

    Capturing girls’ voices: Channelling girls’ recommendations into global and national level action. Globally, there are around 600 million adolescent girls. Adolescence is a pivotal transitional period that requires special attention to ensure progress for all girls, especially the most vulnerable, and poses a unique opportunity to break intergenerational cycles of poverty and to transform gender roles. The onset of puberty and menstruation can pose an additional barrier to a girl’s personal freedom, and can signal entry into a different role in their family and wider society. …

  8. 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. …

  9. Exploring the opinions of parents and teachers about young people receiving puberty and sex education in rural Kenya: a qualitative study

    In Kenya, one of the most significant public health concerns is the spread of HIV. Additionally, 13,000 girls drop out of school every year due to pregnancy. Although the Kenyan Ministry of Education and other independent organisations have tried to implement various means of developing puberty and sexual health education for young people, the situation is not improving. Aims: To explore the opinions of teachers and parents in rural Kenya about delivering puberty and sex education and to identify their perceptions of barriers to young people accessing this education. …

  10. We keep it secret so no one should know - A qualitative study to explore young schoolgirls attitudes and experiences with menstruation in rural western Kenya

    Background: Keeping girls in school offers them protection against early marriage, teen pregnancy, and sexual harms, and enhances social and economic equity. Studies report menstruation exacerbates school-drop out and poor attendance, although evidence is sparse. This study qualitatively examines the menstrual experiences of young adolescent schoolgirls. Methods and Findings: The study was conducted in Siaya County in rural western Kenya. A sample of 120 girls aged 14–16 years took part in 11 focus group discussions, which were analysed thematically. …

  11. WASH in schools empowers girls' education. Proceedings of the menstrual hygiene mananagement in schools virtual conference 2013

    There is increasing interest in exploring and addressing the menstrual hygiene management (MHM) barriers facing schoolgirls and female teachers in educational settings. Around the globe, WASH in Schools (WinS) focuses on fostering social inclusion and individual self-respect – and addresses MHM as a key agenda. By offering an alternative to the stigma and marginalization associated with hygiene issues, integrating MHM into WinS empowers all students, and especially encourages girls and female teachers. …

  12. The world starts with me!

    This is an innovative, computer-based, online curriculum on sexual and reproductive health and rights for secondary schools in Indonesia, Kenya, Thailand and Uganda. It combines information technology (IT) skills-building and creative expression with sexual health and rights (SRH) education, using experiential learning as the didactic method and following the principles of three combined approaches: adolescents' development, behaviour change and the human rights-based approach. …

  13. Naomi's experience, Chela 4

    This document is part of a series of short storybooks for children which are about the story of a 10-year-old girl named Chela. Through her own experiences and the stories of her grandmother, she learns useful lessons of life. The documents introduce issues such as menstruation, sanitary pads, private parts and wet dreams. The four booklets also discuss alcohol, drugs and cigarettes, healthy eating, sexual harassment and abstinence before marriage. They aim to provide basic information on puberty in an easy-to-understand and entertaining manner. …

  14. Grandmother's visit, Chela 1

    This document is part of a series of short storybooks for children which are about a 10-year-old girl named Chela. Through her own experiences and the stories of her grandmother, she learns useful lessons of life. The documents introduce issues such as menstruation, sanitary pads, private parts and wet dreams. The four booklets also discuss alcohol, drugs and cigarettes, healthy eating, sexual harassment and abstinence before marriage. They aim to provide basic information on puberty in an easy-to-understand and entertaining manner. …

  15. You, your life, your dreams : a book for adolescents

    The book was written for adolescents aged 14 to 19, to help them cope with challenges and decisions they may face during the transition period from childhood to adulthood. The book presents factual information about the changes that occur during this time of life, and about a range of other issues such as: how to stay physically and emotionally healthy, how to avoid sexually transmitted infections and unwanted pregnancy, how to handle pressure to have sex, and how to avoid drug and alcohol abuse. …

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