On Saturday 17th June 2017, members of SSLDF and the Magbenteh Community Hospital medical team gave a talk on the importance of reproductive health for 80 youths from the Sports for Empowerment Foundation in the compound of a local school.
Paul and Saffa, two of our Community Health Officer’s, alongside Dr Genevieve, began the session outlining the definition of safe sex, how sexually transmitted diseases spread, the importance of regular sexual health check-ups, and the different types of birth control to prevent unplanned pregnancies. There was also an interactive proportion of the presentation where the boys were show pictures of extreme cases of STDs/STIs. This section came to an end with a short question and answer section with the Magbenteh Community Hospital medical team.
To compliment the medical perspective, our Project Coordinator, Charlotte and volunteer, Saidu, presented from a social welfare point of view. The topics covered here consisted of family planning, breaking down the negative stigmas in Sierra Leone about birth control, and the important elements of a healthy relationship. Within the family planning section the financial and social responsibilities of starting a family were covered, with an emphasis on delaying starting a family until the boys’ personal, professional, and educational goals have been achieved. Starting a family when a person is financially established will ensure that the family is financially secure. This period of the seminar also ended with a question and answer section in which the boys were full engaged and enthusiastic.
With Sierra Leone having one of the highest teenage pregnancy rates in the world; 34% of all pregnancies in the coutntry occur amongst adolescent girls. This type of educational workshop in the community is vital for the future of Sierra Leone, therefore SSLDF felt privileged to have worked in partnership with Sports for Empowerment Foundation.