Meeting the Needs of Young People for Sexual and Reproductive Health Information in Ghana

Eugene Darteh, University of Cape Coast
Akwasi Kumi-Kyereme, University of Cape Coast
Kofi Awusabo-Asare, University of Cape Coast

The objective of this paper is to assess the knowledge and concerns of young people about sexual and reproductive health vis-à-vis the messages targeting them. The paper is based on a nationally representative survey conducted in 2004, as well as focus group discussions and in-depth interviews among 12-19 year olds. While over 95% of young people aged 12-19 years were aware of HIV/AIDS, only 39% of females and 43% of males had heard about other STI. The main sexual and reproductive health concern of both males and females from the qualitative data was pregnancy rather than HIV/AIDS. The results indicate the inadequate knowledge about other STI although it is a co-factor in HIV/AIDS infection and mismatch between the concerns of young people and SRH campaigns. To ensure that young people are safe, programs for them should be comprehensive taking into consideration their concerns and aspirations.

Presented in Poster Session 2