You have news tips, feel free to contact us via email


By: Annakleta Haikera

Teenage pregnancies in the Kavango West have been a significant concern in the educational sector. 

Teenage pregnancy statistics for 2020-21 show that the Kavango West had 678 teenage pregnancies, with which the Bunya Circuit recorded the highest with 303 teenage pregnancies. Thus an educational, motivational tour supported by the education ministry in the Kavango West via the RACE office kicked off on 14 May 2022. 

The program targets boarding schools intending to reduce the number of teenage pregnancies and endeavour for zero pregnancies. 

The Kahenge Combined School is one of the schools that has benefitted from the campaign. Only this year, 10 teenagers were reported pregnant, with two dropping out of school. Most schools recorded high teenage pregnancies during the Covid-19 school lockdown periods. 

The knowledge and attitude of adolescent girls and boys are the only means to limit the high number of teenage pregnancies, says Risto Mushongo, a motivational speaker and the campaign’s founder and organiser. He said adolescent pregnancies are an important public health problem and a socio-economic challenge in diverse societies.

“As a tremendously important problem, this issue has caused major concerns, as it exposes adolescent girls to social isolation and physical and psychological harm. So, in this campaign, we will educate and talk about early and unintended pregnancies. This study aims to determine the knowledge and attitude of teenage boys and girls about why it’s good to talk about pregnancy at the right time, the causes of pregnancy and the consequences,” Mushongo said.

He further said he spent most of his life wanting to help young people, the spread of unwanted pregnancies, which has been one of the Kavango Region’s hottest topics.

“Therefore, I have decided to come up with the initiative of campaigning with boarding schools to educate them and strive for zero teenage pregnancies.

Kamukwanyama Emilie, a learner at Kahenge Combined School, told The Villager, “the program and section to educate them on teenage pregnancy awareness was very interesting.” 

She also said she had learned a lot of things. 

“I have learnt about teenage pregnancy, peer pressure, puberty and friendship and discipline. The knowledge that I got from the motivational educators is compelling. 

“I am sure everything said by the speaker is what has been happening and what will happen to my friends or me if we’re not careful. I surely know that teenage pregnancy is not a good thing. It’s stressful, and if you happen to be a mother at a young age, it’s stressful,” she said.

Nick Hakusembe, a campaign leader, said parents neglecting their children and not talking about sex at home also contribute to high teenage pregnancies. 

“As I spoke to the learners in a crowd, a girl talked to me about puberty. She said that ‘if I see my first menstruation, I am ready to have sex.’ This is the misinformation that this teenager has. They lack a lot of knowledge, and we will surely give them the rightful information. We need to stop being neglectful as parents and answer all questions our young ones ask us,” he said.

The campaign and outreach will run in the Kavango West region, where they will target all boarding schools. 

They will visit schools every Saturday, educate learners about early and unintended pregnancies and increase youth access to evidence-based and evidence-informed programs to prevent teenage pregnancy. 

They seek to address gender-based violence and sexual exploitation and abuse, gang rape and statutory rape. 

The motivational educators will also motivate learners and the youth in schools on the importance of education, goal setting and achieving, and personal growth. 

The campaign will also talk about Covid-19 and the importance of vaccination.


Julia Heita

Related Posts

Read Also ... x