5 year comprehensive sexuality education project set for review
22 June, 2017 | Blog
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UNESCO Regional HIV and Health Team for Eastern and Southern Africa (RTESA) and the Swedish Regional Team on Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights (RTSRHR) will meet from the 27th to the 30th of June 2017 in Johannesburg, South Africa to review a UNESCO led project that has been supported by Sweden since 2013.

The project entitled Strengthening sexual and reproductive health and HIV prevention amongst children and young people through promoting comprehensive sexuality education (CSE) in Eastern and Southern Africa (ESA), is currently being implemented in 21 countries in Eastern and Southern Africa.

During the course of implementation, the project has garnered high-level political support for comprehensive sexuality education in Eastern and Southern Africa and reached more than 26 million young people, teachers, parents and communities in the region through training and the mass media.

The review meeting will bring together various stakeholders including government officers from ministries of education and health, UNESCO National Program Officers, regional civil society organizations, faith-based organizations young people, and other UN agencies.

Some of the themes to be discussed and reflected upon include School-related gender-based violence, early and unintended pregnancy, comprehensive sexuality education, and youth friendly services. The meeting will also feature skills-building sessions on gender norms, community mobilization and how to engage faith communities.

Following the successful implementation of the project, discussions between UNESCO and Sweden are underway for a second phase. The phase entitled, “Our Rights, Our Lives, Our Future” will reach 30 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa including those from West and Central Africa (Angola, Botswana, Benin, Cameroon, Chad, Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Gabon, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, South Africa, South Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe).

For more information, please contact: p.machawira(at)unesco.org or r.shawa(at)unesco.org

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Snippets from the session co- hosted by UNESCO, UNAIDS, Unfpa Esaro and the Government of Cote D' Ivoire on the sidelines of the ongoing 2017 International Conference on AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Infection in Africa (ICASA).

The session was moderated by the UNAIDS Director Regional Support Team for Eastern and Southern Africa (RTESA) Dr Catherine Sozi and graced by Honourable Kandia Camara – Cote d’Ivoire Minister of National Education & Technical Education, Honourable Mokhele Moletsane – Lesotho Minister of Education & Training, Honourable Michael Lopuke Lotyam – South Sudan Undersecretary of General Education and Instruction and Ms Lorence Kabasele – President of Afriyan Eastern and Southern African Region - Afriyan ESA

Dr. Catherine Sozi, “We are all ambassadors of Comprehensive Sexuality Education (CSE) as it is not against any culture or religion but builds support to the cultural and religious pillars of society”

Mr. Michael Lopuke Lotyam, “When a country is preparing for war, it does not buy ammunition during the war but well before the war breaks out. In the same vein, CSE serves to empower young people and adolescents to face head on their sexuality and changes in them that may lead to risky behaviour if not properly harnessed.”

Ms Lorence Kabasele, “Let us leave no one behind in the journey. This calls for measures to be put in place that brings CSE to the illiterate out of school adolescent and parent who do not understand English, French or Portuguese. Let us have the guidance translated into the local languages too.”
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