COMMUNITY-CENTERED REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH EDUCATION FOR MOTHERS IN RURAL KENYA
Keywords:Teen pregnancy, Reproductive health education, Maternal health, Family planning
In Kilifi County, a coastal region of Kenya, one in five teenage girls begins
childbearing. This represents the highest teen pregnancy rate in Kenya. Since 2016, Mtree,
a non-profit organization registered in both the U.S. and Kenya, has conducted a multi-year
field assessment in Maya village in rural Kilifi. The objective of this assessment was to
identify the reproductive health needs of mothers through an explorative study to design a
community-centered curriculum that would address the gaps identified from the needs
assessment. In partnership with Pwani University, Mtree performed home visits and focused
group interviews on interviews on a convenient sample of 69 women from 2016 to 2020.
The village elders introduced interviewers and translators to the community and arranged
group interviews. Each year the questionnaire varied as the subsequent questionnaire was
based on previous findings. Since 2018, the questionnaire for mothers focused on their
expectations for teen girls in the community, especially on teen pregnancy and job
opportunities. Findings revealed that the primary challenges for Maya women were lack of
job opportunities, inability to afford sanitary towels, lack of knowledge around and
misunderstanding of reproductive health, and lack of male partner involvement. Mothers
reported that the core factors that lead to unwanted early pregnancy included lack of
reproductive health knowledge, sexual abuse, peer pressure, and poverty. The mother's
primary values and concerns with reproductive health were assessed and integrated into the
mother's family planning and teen pregnancy prevention program. In 2021, eight mothers of
teen girls in grades 4 and 5 at Maya Primary School were recruited by village leaders and
participated in the program and learn about how to communicate with teen girls on the topic
of reproductive health, dating, and roles of women in the community and society.
Ackard, D. M., Neumark-Sztainer, D., Story, M., & Perry, C. (2006). Parent-child connectedness and behavioral and emotional health among adolescents. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 30(1), 59–66. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.amepre.2005.09.013
Amaze org. (2021). Growing Up: Awkward Conversations. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DBe7-PHRav8
Awusabo-Asare, K., Doku, D. T., Kumi-Kyereme, A., & Esia-Donkoh, K. (2017). From Paper to Practice: Sexuality Education Policies and Their Implementation in Kenya. Sexuality Education, 1(April), 93. https://www.guttmacher.org/sites/default/files/report_pdf/sexuality_education_policies_and_their_implementation_in_guatemala.pdf
Bastien, S., Kajula, L., & Muhwezi, W. (2011). A review of studies of parent-child communication about sexuality and HIV/AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa. Reproductive Health, 8(1), 25. https://doi.org/10.1186/1742-4755-8-25
Breakthrough Action And Research. (2021). USAID. Encouraging Family Planning Counseling That Promotes Meaningful Choice. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iUAPj7nFAEY
Crichton, J., Ibisomi, L., & Gyimah, S. O. (2012). Mother-daughter communication about sexual maturation, abstinence and unintended pregnancy: Experiences from an informal settlement in Nairobi, Kenya. Journal of Adolescence, 35(1), 21–30. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.adolescence.2011.06.008
DESIP. (2019). Family Planning: a key ingredient for a healthier and more productive population. https://options.co.uk/sites/default/files/desip-policybrief_kilifi.pdf
Deutsche Stiftung Weitbevoelukerung. (2014). Sexual and Reproductive Health Facilitators’ Training Manual.
Evans, W. D., Blitstein, J. L., & Davis, K. C. (2011). Social cognitive mediators of parent-child sexual communication. American Journal of Health Behavior, 35(4), 428–437. https://doi.org/10.5993/AJHB.35.4.5
Faith of Action Network. (2016). Teenage Pregnancy in Kenya’ s Kilifi County:
Gichangi, P., Waithaka, M., Thiongo, M., Agwanda, A., Radloff, S., Tsui, A., Zimmerman, L., & Temmerman, M. (2021). Demand satisfied by modern contraceptive among married women of reproductive age in Kenya. PLoS ONE, 16(4 April). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0248393
KDHS. (2014). 2014 Kenya Demographic and Health Survey key findings. Social Welfare in Africa, 1–358. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315670546
Kenya Inter Agency Rapid Assessment (KIRA). (2014). Kilifi Secondary Data Review as at February 2014. Februar 2. https://www.humanitarianresponse.info/system/files/documents/files/Kilifi Secondary Data Review_20141112.pdf
KNBS. (2019). 2019 Kenya Population and Housing Census Volume 1: Population by County and Sub-County. In 2019 Kenya Population and Housing Census: Vol. I (Issue November). https://www.knbs.or.ke/?wpdmpro=2019-kenya-population-and-housing-census-volume-i-population-by-county-and-sub-county
Maina, B. W., Ushie, B. A., & Kabiru, C. W. (2020). Parent-child sexual and reproductive health communication among very young adolescents in Korogocho informal settlement in Nairobi, Kenya. Reproductive Health, 17(1), 1–14. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12978-020-00938-3
Ministry of Health Kenya. (2016). Fact Sheet: Adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health in Narok. Ministry of Health, 7(2010), 3–4.
Muhwezi, W. W., Katahoire, A. R., Banura, C., Mugooda, H., Kwesiga, D., Bastien, S., & Klepp, K. I. (2015). Perceptions and experiences of adolescents, parents and school administrators regarding adolescent-parent communication on sexual and reproductive health issues in urban and rural Uganda Adolescent Health. Reproductive Health, 12(1), 1–16. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12978-015-0099-3
National AIDS and STI Control Programme. (2016). Kenya HIV Estimates 2015. 1–28.
Nyapela, O., Mwadime, K. L., & Zighe, P. B. (2020). Keeping Dreams Alive. Unpublished book, Community led Planning Approach 2020.
PATH. (2006). Tuko Pamoja: Adolescent Reproductive Health and Life Skills Curriculum. https://path.azureedge.net/media/documents/CP_kenya_KARHP_curric_3-06.pdf%0D
Rosa, E. M., & Tudge, J. (2013). Urie Bronfenbrenner’s Theory of Human Development: Its Evolution From Ecology to Bioecology. Journal of Family Theory & Review, 5(4), 243–258. https://doi.org/10.1111/jftr.12022
Sridawruang, C., Pfeil, M., & Crozier, K. (2010). Why Thai parents do not discuss sex with their children: A qualitative study. Nursing and Health Sciences, 12(4), 437–443. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1442-2018.2010.00556.x
UNFPA. (2021). Breaking the silence that led to a high teenage pregnancy rate in a Kenyan county. https://kenya.unfpa.org/en/news/breaking-silence-led-high-teenage
US Department of Education. (2021). Helping your child through early adolescence. https://www2.ed.gov/parents/academic/help/adolescence/adolescence.pdf
USAID. (2021). Global Health Learning Center Certificate Programs. https://www.globalhealthlearning.org/certificate-program
WHO. (2014). Adolescent pregnancy Factsheet. https://www.who.int/en/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/adolescent-pregnancy%0D
How to Cite
Copyright (c) 2023 Linet Lumumba, Esther J Sin, Hellen Okoth, Osman A Abdullahi, Hyewon Lee
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
The Conference Proceedings of International Conference on Public Health is entirely Open Access, which means that all published content is freely available without charge to the user or his/her institution. Users are allowed to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of the articles in this Proceedings journal without asking prior permission from the publisher or the author. This is in accordance with the BOAI definition of open access.
Authors who publish with Conference Proceedings agree to the following terms:
- Authors retain copyright and grant the Proceedings of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgment of the work's authorship and initial publication in this conference proceedings.
- Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the proceeding's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgment of its initial publication in this conference proceedings.
- Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work.
Published articles are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.