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UNESCO HIV and Health Education Clearinghouse

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  1. Rethinking sexual agency: proposing a multicomponent model based on young people’s life stories

    Sexual health policies explicitly aim to encourage young people to take responsibility for their sexuality to prevent adverse outcomes such as unintended pregnancies, STIs and sexual assault. In Europe and North America, ‘choice’ has become a central concept in sexual and reproductive health policy making. However, the concept of choice is not unproblematic, not least because the cultural emphasis on individual responsibility obscures structural limitations and inequalities, and mutual responsibility between partners. …

  2. The revised international technical guidance on sexuality education - a powerful tool at an important crossroads for sexuality education

    In January 2018, UNESCO, together with UNAIDS, UNFPA, UNICEF, UN Women, and the WHO, completed the substantial technical and political process of updating the International Technical Guidance on Sexuality Education, thereby unifying a UN position on rationale, evidence, and guidance on designing and delivering comprehensive sexuality education (CSE).

  3. Zambia’s school re-entry policy for adolescent mothers: examining impacts beyond re-enrollment

    The persistently high rate of adolescent pregnancy, particularly among poor girls and in rural areas, is one of the reasons that universal secondary school completion remains elusive in Zambia. We used a mixed methods approach to explore how Zambia’s re-entry policy is related to young mothers’ outcomes beyond re-enrollment in school. We found that girls with knowledge of the policy were less likely to be forced out of school while pregnant and perceived less stigma after delivery. …

  4. Towards comprehensive sexuality education: a comparative analysis of the policy environment surrounding school-based sexuality education in Ghana, Peru, Kenya and Guatemala

    The successful implementation of comprehensive sexuality education (CSE) programmes in schools depends on the development and implementation of strong policy in support of CSE. This paper offers a comparative analysis of the policy environment governing school-based CSE in four low- and middle-income countries at different stages of programme implementation: Ghana, Peru, Kenya and Guatemala. …

  5. HIV education: reflections on the past, priorities for the future

    From early in the epidemic, education has been central to HIV prevention, treatment, and care. This paper reflects on lessons learned over the last 30 years. It signals the limits of high level international commitments to education and HIV and the strategies of information-giving and life skills development adopted in their wake. It argues for the adoption of a more genuinely educational approach to HIV, sex, and sexuality education in which difficult questions are raised, diversity is recognized, and options are provided for a differentiated yet effective response. …

  6. Getting to zero: we can’t do it without addressing substance use

    HIV elimination by 2030 cannot occur without attention to substance use. It cuts across risk groups and affects sexual risk behavior, treatment adherence, and systemic processes such as immunity and inflammation. There continues to be often limited attention to non-injection drug use and the syndemic character of HIV and substance use. …

  7. Women and HIV in the twenty-first century: how can we reach the UN 2030 goal?

    Women have always been part of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. As with other populations affected by HIV, for many years the only prevention strategy available was behavior change. Behavioral interventions for women were developed and evaluated, with some success. Because women did not control the use of male condoms, efficacious interventions needed to build skills for partner negotiation. …

  8. 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

  9. Challenges to implementing national comprehensive sexuality education curricula in low- and middle-income countries: case studies of Ghana, Kenya, Peru and Guatemala

    School-based comprehensive sexuality education (CSE) can help adolescents achieve their full potential and realize their sexual and reproductive health and rights. This is particularly pressing in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), where high rates of unintended pregnancy and STIs among adolescents can limit countries’ ability to capitalize on the demographic dividend. While many LMICs have developed CSE curricula, their full implementation is often hindered by challenges around program planning and roll-out at the national and local level. …

  10. Sexual and reproductive health outcomes are positively associated with comprehensive sexual education exposure in Mexican high-school students

    This paper provides evidence of the potential beneficial effects of CSE on attitudes, knowledge, and behaviors regarding sexual and reproductive health among adolescents. In addition, it identifies areas that should be strengthened to increase the positive impact of CSE.

  11. Cost-effectiveness analysis: educational interventions that reduce the incidence of HIV/AIDS infection in Kenyan teenagers

    This paper demonstrates a comprehensive and thorough application of an education cost-effectiveness analysis. Two interventions implemented in Western Kenya aimed to reduce the incidence of HIV/AIDS contraction in middle school girls. The cost-effectiveness of each intervention is assessed, ex post facto, by combining the results of the two programs’ evaluations with their costs. As few education evaluations consider cost, this article highlights a sound and disciplined method to use when detailed cost information is both readily available and unavailable. …

  12. A time for global action: addressing girls’ menstrual hygiene management needs in schools

    Summary Points: There is an absence of guidance, facilities, and materials for schoolgirls to manage their menstruation in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). Formative evidence has raised awareness that poor menstrual hygiene management (MHM) contributes to inequity, increasing exposure to transactional sex to obtain sanitary items, with some evidence of an effect on school indicators and with repercussions for sexual, reproductive, and general health throughout the life course. …

  13. Improving young people’s health and wellbeing through a school health research network: reflections on school–researcher engagement at the national level

    The School Health Research Network is a policy–practice–research partnership established in Wales in 2013. The network aims to: provide health and well-being data for national, regional and local stakeholders, including schools; co-produce school-based health improvement research for Wales; and build capacity for evidence-informed practice in the school health community. …

  14. Two years later: preservice teachers’ experiences of learning to use participatory visual methods to address the South African AIDS epidemic

    South Africa continues to struggle with the world’s highest HIV rates, and the country’s young people are amongst those most severely affected by this epidemic. The education sector, and especially teachers, are situated to be leaders in the national response and can provide emotional support as well as information on gender, sexuality, and HIV and AIDS. …

  15. The HIV and sexual reproductive health status of young people in Swaziland: the rationale for focused youth investment

    Methods: The HIV and Sexual Reproductive Health Status of Young People in Swaziland analysis were prepared in stages: desk review and analysis, consultations/interview meetings with key stakeholders, data analysis and compilation of the report.Results and discussion: Early sexual debut, high adolescent fertility rate, unmet need for family planning, and on-going problems with sexual and gender based violence (GBV) are some of the key issues faced by young people in terms of reproductive health in Swaziland.

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