SEXUAL and reproductive health training for young women in PNG is important in schools, according to Young Women’s Christian Association general secretary Diane Kambanei.
Kambanei said that at an US Embassy event called Day of the Girl at Caritas Technical Secondary School last week.
She said the association had discovered when running sexual and reproductive health (SRH) training that schools failed to address the issues.
“SRH is not properly addressed in schools because teachers aren’t sensitised to the issues,” Kambanei said.
“They aren’t comfortable to talk about them in schools. When young women aren’t informed at school or at home, they make wrong choices.”
Kambanei said the needs and rights of the people especially on sexual and reproductive health had been neglected.
“As a consequence, teenage pregnancy is very high in PNG, with 13 per cent of girls becoming mothers, often not out of choice,” she said.
“Pregnancy can be a very frightening experience for girls, as they may be forced to drop out of school or marry.
“Women and girls with access to sexual and reproductive health services, like family planning, have more choices in their lives. Having choices in life empowers women to plan their life and make decisions.”
The United Nations Population Fund is working with the YWCA to overcome some of the obstacles faced by young women in the country. The National