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UNESCO HIV and Health Education Clearinghouse

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  1. Proposing a conceptual framework to address social norms that influence adolescent sexual and reproductive health

    With 1.8 billion young people aged 10-24 years in the world today, the cohort of adolescents and youth is the largest in history. Concurrently, millions of adolescents are confronting sexual and reproductive health (SRH) challenges, including high rates of unmet need for contraception, unintended pregnancy, and clandestine and unsafe abortion. Social norms or shared understandings of how oneself and others should behave can alleviate or exacerbate these challenges. …

  2. Reducing pregnancy among adolescents

    Across a range of programs, interventions that successfully changed the calculus of costs and benefits of unprotected sexual activity and childbirth delayed pregnancy among adolescents. Some programs directly altered costs and benefits while others shifted perceptions of them

  3. Learners’ perspectives on the provision of condoms in South African public schools

    A stubborn health challenge for learners in South African public schools concerns sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR). In 2015, the Department of Basic Education (DBE) proposed the provision of condoms and SRHR-services to learners in schools. This study aimed to contribute to the finalisation and implementation of DBE’s policy by exploring learners’ perspectives on the provision of condoms and SRHR-services in schools. …

  4. Sex education in the digital area

    This issue of the IDS Bulletin presents a collection of scholarly work on the topic for a mixed audience of researchers, policymakers and practitioners. A collaboration between Love Matters and IDS, articles discuss experiences with digital sex education in many countries and in a range of settings. The issues confronted are diverse, yet the common themes encountered are often as striking as the differences. …

  5. Interventions to prevent sexually transmitted infections, including HIV, among young people in low- and middle-income countries: a systematic review of the published and gray literature

    Sexually transmitted infections (STIs), including HIV, are prevalent among adolescents and can have lasting adverse health consequences. The objective of this review is to identify high-quality interventions and evaluations to decrease STI transmission and related risky behaviors among young people in low- and middle-income countries. PubMed, Embase, PsycInfo, Cinahl Plus, Popline, and the Cochrane Databases were searched without language limitations for articles published through November 2015. Gray literature was searched by hand. …

  6. ‘… a huge monster that should be feared and not done’: Lessons learned in sexuality education classes in South Africa

    Research has foregrounded the way in which heterosexual practices for many young people are not infrequently bound up with violence and unequal transactional power relations. The Life Orientation sexuality education curriculum in South African schools has been viewed as a potentially valuable space to work with young people on issues of reproductive health, gender and sexual norms and relations. …

  7. How reliable are reports of early adolescent reproductive and sexual health events in demographic and health surveys?

    CONTEXT: Age at sexual debut, age at first marriage or first union and age at first birth are among the most widely used indicators of health and well-being for female adolescents. However, the accuracy of estimates for these indicators, particularly for younger adolescents, is poorly understood. METHODS: For each of nine countries in Africa and Latin America, Demographic and Health Survey (DHS) data from two surveys conducted five years apart were used to examine women’s reports of age at sexual debut, marriage or first union, and first birth. …

  8. Effects of peer education intervention on HIV/AIDS related sexual behaviors of secondary school students in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia: a quasi-experimental study

    Background: Worldwide, about 50 % of all new cases of HIV occur in youth between age 15 and 24 years. Studies in various sub-Saharan African countries show that both out of school and in school adolescents and youth are engaged in risky sexual behaviors. School-based health education has been a cornerstone of youth-focused HIV prevention efforts since the early 1990s. In addition, peer-based interventions have become a common method to effect important health-related behavior changes and address the HIV/AIDS pandemic. …

  9. The effectiveness of HIV/AIDS school-based sexual health education programmes in Nigeria: a systematic review

    HIV/AIDS is one of the most important public health challenges facing Nigeria today. Recent evidence has revealed that the adolescent population make up a large proportion of the 3.7% reported prevalence rate among Nigerians aged 15–49 years. School-based sexual health education has therefore become an important tool towards fighting this problem. This systematic review assesses the efficacy of these educational programmes and examines how future programmes and their evaluations can improve. …

  10. Constructing the ideal Muslim sexual subject: problematics of school-based sex education in Iran

    School-based sex education is an underdeveloped and challenging issue to address in Iran. This paper provides insights into the main challenges in developing and implementing school-based sex education in Iran. Through an investigation of one Iranian boys' school that, in contrast to the majority of Iranian educational institutions, has an established strategy for educating its pupils on sexual matters, it is possible to critically explore the underlying principles and practice of sex education in this institution. …

  11. Creating Futures: lessons from the development of a livelihood-strengthening curriculum for young people in eThekwini's informal settlements

    Comprehending praxis is a critical step in developing interventions that can have a real-world impact on people's lives. In this paper, we reflect on the lessons learned in the development of a curriculum for young people living in informal settlements in eThekwini, who are exposed to numerous vulnerabilities, including HIV-related risks associated with precarious urban livelihoods. Behavioural interventions have not led to commensurate reductions in HIV incidence, and the impact of these approaches remains regulated by numerous contextual conditions affecting those participating. …

  12. What does not work in adolescent sexual and reproductive health: a review of evidence on interventions commonly accepted as best practices

    Youth centers, peer education, and one-off public meetings have generally been ineffective in facilitating young people's access to sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services, changing their behaviors, or influencing social norms around adolescent SRH. Approaches that have been found to be effective when well implemented, such as comprehensive sexuality education and youth-friendly services, have tended to flounder as they have considerable implementation requirements that are seldom met. …

  13. School-linked sexual health services for young people (SSHYP): a survey and systematic review concerning current models, effectiveness, cost-effectiveness and research opportunities

    The aims of this study were, first, to identify current forms of school-based sexual health services (SBSHS) and school-linked sexual health services (SLSHS) in the UK; second, to review and synthesise existing evidence from qualitative and quantitative studies concerning the effectiveness, acceptability and cost-effectiveness of these types of service, and third, to identify potential areas for further research. The study had two components. …

  14. Factors associated with teenage pregnancy in the European Union countries: a systematic review

    Background: As part of the REPROSTAT2 project, this systematic review aimed to identify factors associated with teenage pregnancy in 25 European Union countries.Methods: The search strategy included electronic bibliographic databases (1995 to May 2005), bibliographies of selected articles and requests to all country representatives of the research team for relevant reports and publications. Primary outcome measure was conception. Inclusion criteria were quantitative studies of individual-level factors associated with teenage (13–19 years) pregnancy in EU countries. …

  15. Unintended pregnancies among young women living in urban slums: Evidence from a prospective study in Nairobi City, Kenya

    Background: Despite the significant proportion of young people residing in slum communities, little attention has been paid to the sexual and reproductive health (SRH) challenges they face during their transition to adulthood within this harsh environment. Little is known about the extent to which living in extreme environments, like slums, impact SRH outcomes, especially during this key developmental period. …

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