Gauteng embarks on safe sex campaign

Monday, February 9, 2009

Johannesburg - Condoms will be dished out at the Tembisa and Nqayizivele High Schools in Johannesburg on Thursday to educate young adults about the serious risks involved with unprotected sex.

The Gauteng MEC of Health Brian Hlongwa will use Sexually Transmitted Infections (STI) or Condom Week to highlight the dangers of unplanned pregnancies and the impact it could have on the youngsters' future.

Last year the two schools recorded 31 pregnancies between them.

STI/Condom Week, which kicks off in the province on Monday, will be used to empower learners with information on reproductive health so they can make wiser choices in the future.

Departmental spokesperson, Phumelele Kaunda said during the visit, learners will be taught about the importance of practicing safe sex and putting more emphasis on the significance of waiting until they are older.

She added that teenage pregnancies occurs in all communities and across racial lines however, due to cultural and religious beliefs, sex issues are not discussed and dealt with openly or as early as it should be.

"The reluctance of parents and other elders to empower their children with such knowledge does not lead only to unwanted pregnancies but disturbance at school, infection of sexual transmitted illnesses and psychological scars," Ms Kaunda said.