Knowledge on Reproductive Health among Adolescent High School Girls in Rwanda, Kayonza District

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Ndanyuzwe Aime, Dr. T. Pugalenthi


Adolescence – a period of transition between childhood and adulthood is a significant period of human growth and maturation. The reproductive health of adolescents has attracted the global attention in recent years and the same attention has been observed in Rwanda. According to the Rwanda Demographic Health Survey (RDHS) of 2015, the survey revealed that only 17% of young women used condom at their first sex. Having a comprehensive knowledge about HIV prevention is key to succeed in preventing HIV transmission among the young population, mainly girls who are more exposed and vulnerable. In the same survey (RDHS) conducted in 2019/2020, Rwanda has more than 40% of young women who do not have sufficient knowledge about HIV prevention. Adolescent girls in Rwanda are facing different troubles due to the insufficient information regarding their own physical and sexual developments. Adolescents find themselves influenced by various factors, including western influence and a traditional conservatism at home, which strictly forbids discussion on sex. This contrast leads to the confusion among adolescents. They acquire limited knowledge from friends, relatives and sometimes from books. They are not able to have dialogue and clarification with their parents because of inhibitions and social taboos. Girls have no independent authority to control their sexuality or reproduction. They are expected to get married early and produce children. Control of female sexuality is shifted from the father to the husband.  Further, they also suffer from a variety of poverty-ridden village life conditions like lack of facilities, educational backwardness, early marriage, domestic burden, and gender neglect. As such the need of the time is to address this problem through health education in schools to the health professionals

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