Integrate sexuality education in school curriculum – Charles Owekmeno

In Zambia, things are well and the government implemented the comprehensive sexuality education which is not the case in Uganda; the struggles to get sexuality education framework approved by the Ministry of Education are real in Uganda

On 13th Thursday, The Forum for African Women Educationists Uganda in partnership with the Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights Alliance Uganda organized a dissemination breakfast meeting of a scoping study that was carried on “Implementation of Sexuality Education in Zambia”

The meeting attracted policymakers, advocates, government officials, representatives from Civil society organizations and in Uganda, very few young people in school and out of school have accurate knowledge about HIV, STIs, Unwanted wanted pregnancies, rape, Violence and early child marriage

With adequate knowledge, young people make healthy and safe decisions about their sexual health. However, the information is still insufficient to change the behaviours of young people

We should all know that information needs to be combined with the right skills and attitudes, which can be taught and developed through high-quality comprehensive sexuality education

Speaking at the dissemination breakfast meeting, Dr. Wekesah Frederic Murunga from Zambia said; the comprehensive sexuality education in Zambia focuses on puberty, HIV prevention, gender equality, sexual and reproductive health, relationships and human rights, and the overall goal is for young people to enjoy better sexual and reproductive health and have better health outcomes overall

Comprehensive Sexuality Education not only plays a vital role in preventing risk health outcomes but also offers a platform to discuss human rights issues and to promote respectful, non-violent environment amongst young people

When sexuality education framework is passed, the country is much more likely to see positive effects in reducing HIV, STIs and unintended pregnancies, and early child marriages

Uganda’s population is young and still in school so if the sexuality education is passed, teachers and advocates would have an ideal opportunity to reach students with correct and appropriate health education information

The National Coordinator, SRHR Alliance Uganda Mr. Charles Owekmeno thinks that the government needs to integrate sexuality education in school curriculum and make it mandatory, and talking openly about sexuality is still sensitive topic and not an easy thing for some of the people, and the knowledge from the sexuality education framework will help young people understand their sexuality

And the delayed national sexuality education framework makes it difficult for young people to make choices about sex, as well as increasing their vulnerability to violence, early marriage

When young people have access to comprehensive age-appropriate sexuality education before becoming sexually active, they are more likely to make informed decisions about their sexuality

With all the facts stated, the question remains ‘who is behind the delay of the national sexuality education in Uganda?’

Frank Byaruhanga is a human rights activist with years of experience in community dialogues, digital communication, advocacy and digital campaigns. He specializes in Media Relation Work, Management and Training with sufficient knowledge in Governance, Accountability, Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights, Youth-led research, Content developer, Creative Activism, Social Media Management and documentary photography.

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