Launch of Let’s Talk campaign
Unwanted school pregnancy will become a major problem if precaution measures are taken lightweight.
A Let’s Talk campaign was launched on the day of love at UN Plaza in Katutura. The campaign is aimed at tackling Early and Unintended Pregnancies (EUP). The EUP launch is in line with the United Nations Youth Strategy which aims to scale up global, regional and national actions to meet young people’s needs, realise their thoughts and tap not their possibilities as agents of change.
There are three crucial areas that the campaign will be tackled on. Firstly, it must be an advocate for increased access to sexual and reproductive health services for the youth without judgement or discrimination.
Secondly, it has to be ensured that the adolescents are receiving comprehensive life skills education so that they are equipped to make informed life choices and prevent EUP.
Thirdly, young people should be empowered to know their rights to make decisions regarding their health and education that will allow them to reach their full potential.
The deputy minister of ministry of education, arts and culture, Ester Anna Nghipondoka, said EUP has a major negative impact on educational outcomes of adolescents, especially the girls.
“Adolescents who become pregnant face a host of challenges to remain at school and achieve educational milestones,” she said.
The ministry of education, arts and culture record no fewer than 1 500 pregnancies among schoolgirls every year.
“Therefore, Let’s Talk campaign came at prime time when we really need to openly talk, dialogue and debate about EUP holistically to effect change in the society,” Nghipondoka said.
The United Nations (UN) resident coordinator, Rachel Odede, delivered remarks on behalf of the UN system in Namibia.
Last year in July the Unesco regional director for Southern Africa ad UNFPA regional director for Eastern Southern Africa, together with key stakeholders, launched a regional ‘Let’s Talk EUP’ campaign in Johannesburg, South Africa.
“Over the past 25 years we have seen significant developments in recognising the sexual and reproductive health and rights to women and young people as fundamental human rights,” Odede said.
Talitha //Garoes, a learner from A.Shipena Secondary School shared her story at the event. “I fell in love with a young man about ten years older than me. He was sweet, kind and loving and supportive and I felt like he understood me very well,” she said.
She encouraged her peers to abstain from sex. “Abstinence is the best thing for us as young girls because we are not able to handle the consequences,” she stressed.