Communication between parents and adolescents: Implications on adolescent sexual and reproductive health awareness among adolescents in Rukungiri District
Mutekanga, Esau Nelson
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This study was carried out in Rubabo and Rujumbura sub-counties in Rukungiri District with the main objective of investigating the implications of communication between parents and adolescents on sexual and reproductive health awareness. A cross sectional research design where both quantitative and qualitative methods of data collection was adopted. Data was collected using interview schedules from adolescents aged between 10 and 19 and interview guide to solicit information from key informants. Also focus group discussion method was employed to generate more information. Cross tabulations between dependent and independent variables were done and logistic regression was used to determine the significant factors that influence awareness among adolescents regarding sexual and reproductive health. The study found out that there is a communication gap between parents and adolescents regarding adolescent sexual and reproductive health in Rukungiri district. The major source of information was found to be teachers, radios and peers meaning that parents contribute less in educating their children about sexual and reproductive health matters expecting teachers to do it. A big number of adolescents were found to have engaged in sex at early ages ranging from 5 years to 19 years. This is different from the past where sex before marriage was severely punished. The study thus found that there is more room for sex before marriage today than before. The respondents were found to be aware of condoms and their importance as well as how to use them. However, they were not using them during their sexual encounters giving reasons like: - “using a condom is lack of trust and is like chewing a sweet in its jacket”. The study concludes that there is lack of awareness among adolescents regarding their sexual and reproductive health. This leaves them to feed on wrong information especially from their friends or peers thus causing a lot of misconceptions. The study concludes that adolescents in Rukungiri have a lot of misconceptions about sexual and reproductive matters especially got from their friends or peer group members. A study to investigate into the reasons why adolescents do not make proper use of the available adolescent sexual and reproductive health centres since it was not investigated due to the limitedness of time and resources.
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