Parents shying away from sexuality education

Sexuality and sex education

First Lady and Minister of Education and Sports Hon. Janet Museveni launches the Sexuality and sex Education framework. Photo UNFPA/Mina Nozawa

A report released early this year indicated that some parents have shied away from talking to their children about sexuality and sex education in fear of using obscene words in Uganda

The report also shows that both the children and their parents are afraid to discuss these sensitive topics on sexuality and sex education with each other.

Ibrahim Batambuze, communication manager at Reach A Hand Uganda (RAHU) noted that a number of respondents in the report said that delivering sexuality and sex education is a bit challenging because some words disrespect parents.

The report further indicated that some parents have poor communication skills which may not help in the provision of sexuality and sex education.

“In local languages, some words are hard to speak and this makes parents look vulgar and less important in the society,” Batambuze explained while disseminating the report.

Batambuze expressed his concern that the lack of sexuality education to the young people has resulted in high pregnancy rates and school dropout.

“Children get the sexuality and sex  education from their peer and end up being misguided hence the pregnancies,” he added.

He pointed out that as Uganda faces challenges such as high HIV rates and early marriages, it is important to engage the young generation to prevent further problem.

“We need to put better strategies in place to address these issues without compromising our national values and protecting them,” he said.

Sexuality education

Sexuality education aims at developing and strengthening the ability of children and young people to make conscious, satisfying, healthy and respectful choices regarding relationships, sexuality, emotional and physical health. Sexuality education does not encourage children and young people to have sex.

The report on the role of parents in providing sexuality education was conducted by African Youth and Adolescents Network (AfriYAN) in partnership with RAHU.

The study was carried out in five districts including Mayuge, Butaleja, Pallisa and Buyende.

The Koboko district woman MP Margaret Baba Diri said the media is giving a lot of un-coordinating information on sexuality education.

“Some information published especially on the social media is wrong and misleading but with the right information given to children, children will have more knowledge about sexuality education,” she said.

Apollo Masika, Bubulo East constituency, Manafwa District, observed the need for promotion of Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRH) promotion and demystifying misconceptions on sexuality and sex among young people.

“There is a wrong perception among teenagers that when you have sex while standing or washing private parts immediately after sex, you don’t conceive,” he noted.

Among other findings, some parents expressed that they did not see the value of sexuality education because they perceived that it leads to increased promiscuity.

Some caretakers felt that young people do not value their perspectives because they feel that they know more than their caretakers do.

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