Parents’ communication skills to improve adolescents sexual and reproductive health

While the role of parents in SRH education is key, they often lack communication skills amidst cultural norms which do not provide for preventive messages regarding risky sexual behaviours. A new joint ICRH-Mbarara University project wants to improve young adolescents’ access to comprehensive SRH information by improving communication capabilities of parents/guardians in rural areas in Uganda.
The country has a very young population and its sexual and reproductive health outcomes - including teen-age pregnancies and HIV prevalence - remain among the poorest worldwide. Considering the cultural sensitivity, the project employs a community-based participatory research process to develop, implement and evaluate a culturally sensitive and scientifically accurate parent-adolescent communication intervention based on formative research and literature. Furthermore, an interdisciplinary research centre (both physical and virtual) on young adolescents’ SRH will be established at Mbarara University.