Assessing the Efficacy of Sexual Health Education in East Africa

Candice Bangham

Abstract


Although primary education for girls in poor nations has received increasing support in recent years, governments and major funders have devoted inadequate attention to sexual and reproductive health education. Thus, many local and regional women’s rights non-governmental organizations (NGO’s) have intensified their efforts on such issues. The primary purpose of this study is to evaluate the efficacy of a sexual health workshop series created and run by a women’s NGO working in East Africa. The classes were designed to educate young girls in their communities about sexual health and puberty in order to eliminate barriers that keep them from attending and doing well in school. Now implemented in over 29 communities in East Africa, the workshop series is run by local mentors who are trained to share this information and engage girls in dialogue about their reproductive health. Girls who participated in the Tanzania program during 2013 were given surveys to measure impact on several dimensions, including gain of knowledge (about HIV, pregnancy, bodily changes during puberty, etc.) changing of opinions, confidence level, behavioral changes, and level of self-esteem. Pre-survey and post-survey data were collected from 13 different schools for a sample size of 303 participants. Comparison of data collected prior to and after the workshops indicate that the program is highly effective.



Keywords


Sexual Health, Reproductive Health, East Africa

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