Over 60 percent of youth feel that there should be more classes on age appropriate sexual reproductive health (AASRH) education in schools according to a survey conducted by Geopoll.
The survey highlighted that 62 percent of Kenyans learn about menstruation in school while only 12 percent learn from their parents.
“As one of our top concerns, we identified that 38 percent of respondents said they would want to know more about HIV/AIDS, 22 percent would want to learn more about contraceptives and only 6 percent wanted to learn more about sex,” said the Geopoll Director of Project Management, Tavian MacKinnon.
According to the survey, 62 percent of respondents who attended government schools had classes on AASRH and relationships between boys and girls. Only 48 percent of those who attended religious schools had classes on AASRH.
The survey went ahead to denote that almost a third of the respondents who have attended school preferred to get information on AASRH through social media compared to other methods of communication. 42 percent of those who have not received any formal education prefer to get their education from Radio and Television.
Further, it became apparent that parents are one of the least used sources of information on AASRH education at only 5 percent in Nairobi and Homa Bay Counties, 11 percent in Kilifi, 4 percent in Narok, 8 percent in Nyeri and 9 percent in Wajir County.
“We found it interesting that when asked about gender equality, 78 percent of respondents disagreed with the gender statement that ‘…There are times when a woman deserves to be beaten.’ 68 percent of respondents also disagreed with the gender statement that ‘A woman should tolerate violence to keep her family together,’” said Mr. MacKinnon.
“We have rolled out a program on comprehensive sexuality education (CSE) that will take place in three core counties namely Kilifi, Narok and Homabay. This survey was informed by the findings from media and a report done by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) that put the three counties with the highest number of teen pregnancy rates and as such we are rolling out an intense three-year mitigation campaign in those three counties.
We will have more of these conversations on our online campaign dubbed WIWIK-‘What I wish I knew’ and physically in the counties effective immediately,” JIACTIVATE chairperson Mr. Grayson Marwa remarked.
These findings were extracted from respondents between the ages of 18-24 years in 6 counties including Kilifi, Homabay, Narok, Nyeri, Wajir and Nairobi with the latter three serving as a comparative set. In view of this, JIACTIVATE will be flagging off a three-year program on AASRH specifically targeted to Kilifi, Narok, and Homabay.
The campaign will expose the key issues facing young people and their sexual reproductive health rights. These issues are aimed to influence both behavior and policy change.