According to a report by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) 2014, the right of access to age-appropriate comprehensive sexuality education (AACSE) is grounded in fundamental human rights. It is a means to empower children and young people to have full control and protect their health, well-being, and dignity.
The same report defines “Age-appropriate comprehensive sexuality education,” as a right-based gender-focused approach to sexuality education whether in or out of school. The aim of Comprehensive sexuality education is to equip children and young people with skills, attitudes, knowledge and values with the goal of developing a positive view of their sexuality in their emotional and social development.
It is, therefore, important for Kenyans among other stakeholders involved to understand age-appropriate sexuality education which goes beyond teen pregnancies, abstinence or HIV/AIDS. Comprehensive sexuality covers a whole range of benefits.
First, it enables children and young people to develop life skills by encouraging them to think critically about their life choices and communicate with confidence on issues regarding sexual health.
For example, I had a conversation on a lady’s experience the first time she got her menses. Her mother showed her a magazine reporting on the rising number of cervical cancer cases in the country in a bid to protect her from false information through threats. She then said: “My daughter now that you are a woman, keep away from boys if you do not want cervical cancer.”
That was the last time they ever spoke about sex. In her mother’s mind, a horror story on what might happen to her if she attempted to have sex was the most effective way to kill her curiosity about boys and sex. My friend managed to share her story and how it affected her mental health and relationships in her adulthood.
Secondly, age-appropriate comprehensive sexuality education nurtures and explores positive attitudes and values on sexual reproductive health. It encourages people to respect human rights and gender equality. Moreover, it develops a young person’s self-esteem. AACSE empowers young people to control their behavior and in turn treat other people with respect and tolerance besides their gender, race or sexual orientation.
For instance, I find it sad that most Kenyans do not understand what age appropriate Comprehensive Sexuality Education (AACSE) is really all about, and are totally ignorant to the many benefits it could deliver to children and young people. Yet a number of individuals and organizations go as far as petitioning the government to remove CSE from school curricula.
Their biggest argument being that CSE encourages young people to engage in premarital sex when the safest option is to abstain. According to a report released by Kenya Demographic and Health Survey (2014 KDHSin 2014 11% of girls and 20% of boys aged between 15-19 years had their first sexual encounter by age 15, while 47% of girls and 57% of boys aged 20-24 had sex by age 18.
According to a recent report by JIACTIVATE, young people prefer to get information on age appropriate sexual reproductive health from social media, radio and television. This means therefore, that there is a need to provide information on AASRH from the sources that young people use as a strategic way to reach out to them. This will improve the uptake of medical services that exist and increase provision of youth friendly services.
Finally, AACSE encourages young people to acquire accurate information about sexual reproductive health and rights and information about human sexuality. Young people are also able to learn about contraceptives, family life and interpersonal relationships, human rights empowerment, equity and gender roles, sexual abuse among harmful practices in our society.
For some young people in Kenya, the reality is that most parents do not aim to educate but to scare them out of having sex. At home, most parents shy away from discussions about sex and continue to insist that total abstinence is the answer to all sexual and reproductive health issues. Having AASRH will eliminate such fixed mindsets and encourage discussions and knowledge sharing on the topic.
Unfortunately, another reality is that young people will still look for this information from any sources available.
However, this points out to two wrongful assumptions that advocates of abstinence make. First is the assumption that scary stories about sex can maintain virginities and second is the belief that AACSE is all about sex and thus encourages sex.
With reference to the first assumption, evidence continues to show that young people are being initiated into sex much earlier in their life whether or not they hear those scary stories. This is because sex is driven by hormonal activity and emotions which in many cases cannot be suppressed by mare daunting stories of death and diseases.
Further, Parents, the government, schools, and religious leaders should be at the forefront to ensure that knowledge, skills, and values on age-appropriate sexual reproductive health and rights are passed to children and young people as a way to protect the next generation from inaccurate information that may encourage mistakes and immoral behavior.
Teens ask for more investment, emphasis on age-appropriate sexual reproductive health education in schools
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.
NTV’s features reporter scoops prestigious award
NTV features reporter Rose Wangui is the winner of the Knight International Journalism Awards 2019.
International Centre for Journalists (ICFJ) in Washington, DC made the announcement on Tuesday night.
Wangui unearths stories about tough or taboo subjects that no one else dares to touch. ICFJ added stories have led to major improvements in the conditions she brings to light.
Ms Wangui won the award jointly with Organised Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) regional editor Stevan Dojcinovic.
The award honours journalists who, despite difficult circumstances, produce pioneering news reports or innovations that make an impact on the lives of their countries or regions. Recipients include reporters, editors, technologists, media managers or citizen journalists
The two will be awarded during the ICFJ’s 35th Anniversary Awards Dinner on November 7 in Washington, DC.
Kibra transgender woman now admits she is broke
Letoya Johnston, initially male, who changed his gender to female now claims she is broke.
According to a long Instagram post on her timeline. Letoya admits she is from a humble background and would love her fans to know that
Below is the post
“As a child I never grew up with so much. While growing up, I never had much either. I have never in my life been a millionaire neither have I spent millions of money to change to become a woman.
It is so unfortunate that I was NEVER BORN A WOMAN. I was born A MAN. ( HE, HIM, HIS, SIR) .I just feel like one and for that reason I do believe I am a woman.
I am not here to confuse people or make them believe that I have so much money. That is not true my people. I am broke. I am just surviving. Don’t mistake my life style with riches. It is not true. Sometimes I honestly go without food in this Nairobi.
I know most of you see me around top celebrities, flying and dining and running around those those beautiful hotels and amazing kitchens.
Some celebrities sometimes doesn’t pay you the money after you have worked for them. It is just because I keep quiet . PEACE is better than war.
For those hotels, it is work that takes me there.
I am a millennial and so I will take beautiful pictures and videos to make my Instagram look good. It’s just for memories of places I have been to because of my work.
I am not here to lie to the youths. I am here for pure honesty. If you are a person who receives things from celebrities for free, they will use it against you during a disagreement.
I learned this the hard way.! I decided to never let someone else’s riches, fame, status in life, wealth or standards interfere with my own life. I know who I am.
I must start by being honest with myself before I lie to the mass out here. I am extremely broke. I don’t have money and my bank account is closed down. I am surviving from hand to mouth. Just like any other poor Kenyan In the village.
You see this picture here, that is how my house looks like. It is my home. It is what I show off on social media. This is what I am proud of. Things will change I know but before that, this is the current situation. It humbles me to tell my thousands of followers who I truly am.
Let us all keep working hard young generation . It is through hard work that we move out from conditions that I am in right now.
Toy Toy baby – Love. “
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