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UN agency fights teenage pregnancies

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BY RUTENDO MATANHIKE

The United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) is working with government to fight unwanted adolescent pregnancies.

UNFPA analyst for adolescent sexual and reproductive health programme, Penelope Kasere said investment had been made in assisting the Health ministry to develop guidelines on how young people could access sexual reproductive healthcare.

Addressing journalists on the sidelines of a UNFPA Zimbabwe two-day consultative workshop with young people on renewing commitments to the International Conference on Population and Development Conference programme of action, Kasere said: “We have also invested on the side of the services to be responsive to the needs of young people where we support the ministry to ensure the public health institutions, on the 20 focal points we work in, are youth-friendly.”

“We want to make sure that the number (of unwanted pregnancies) decreases through giving comprehensive information, access to services and access to information to help them contribute to society. We also trained the healthcare staff to assist youths in making informed decisions on issues of pregnancies, sexual reproductive health to mention a few.”

Kasere said UNFPA was continually pushing for a decrease in unwanted adolescent pregnancies as the organisation felt that the ratio of 10 out of 100 girls falling pregnant was still too high.

“Zimbabwe in 2019, comparing it with 2015 data, there has been a decrease from 15 in every 100 girls to 10 girls in every 100 falling pregnant in their teenage years. We still think that it is still a high, therefore, there shall be continued efforts by the organisation to decrease that number,” she said.

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