Uganda has the highest rate of teenage pregnancy in Sub-Saharan Africa. 50% of girls are married before they reach 18. Shanti Uganda’s Teen Girls Health & Wellness Program combines education, prevention & empowerment and works towards reducing teen pregnancy, improving maternal health and keeping young girls in school.
Each workshop enables a teen girl to make her own reusable menstrual pad and learn about nutrition, reproductive health, HIV/AIDS, STIs, female role models and healthy relationships.
Young girls in rural Nsaasi Village, Uganda represent some of the most marginalized girls in the region. In addition to early marriage and high teenage pregnancy rates, many of the girls we support have lost parents and are often living under the care of a grandmother, or female relative. A lack of reproductive health education and opportunities within the government school system leaves them with little understanding of their health and rights as women and many are forced to leave school early
Workshops give participants the skills, education, peer support and role models they need to succeed in life and be leaders in their communities – skills and lessons they do not learn or are not communicated in the home environment or at school. This education allows them to make healthy choices, which contributes to a reduction in early pregnancy. Learning to make their own reusable menstrual pads enables them to stay in school and rights’ training empowers them to keep healthy relationships.