NYA urged to strategise to combat poverty, teenage pregnancy

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teenage pregnancy
Teenage pregnancy

Mrs. Gyifa Comfort Tetteh, the Project Director of Compassion International, has urged the National Youth Authority (NYA) to put in place strategies to combat poverty and prevent teenage pregnancy, especially in the Senchi area of the Eastern Region. 

She explained that due to abject poverty in the area, parents usually wanted their children to leave and stay on their own because “there isn’t enough space to accommodate them.”

Compassion International, a child development non-governmental organisation, has 256 children, including 131 girls under its care at the Ebenezer Childhood Development Centre, who were being educated about the perils of adolescent pregnancy.

Mrs Tetteh said the high incidence of poverty in the area was fueling teenage pregnancy, adding that: “Young fellas in the community have no jobs to cater for themselves, so most of them end up in Okada riding, farming, and fishing on the lake, while the young girls support their mothers in their trading activities.”

She said her organisation was collaborating with the Ebenezer Baptist Child and Youth Development Centre to address teenage pregnancy as the young girls faced additional health risks because of their underdeveloped bodies when they got pregnant.

She, therefore, urged the NYA to empower the youth through  skills training activities and sensitisation on pertinent issues  to ensure their holistic development..

Ms Aseye Edem, a mother and resident of Senchi, in an interview with the Ghana News Agency, said because some families did not have enough    spaces   in their homes, they could not reprimand their children when they slept outside.

She blamed parents for the waywardness  of their children  and said: “Most parents don’t show concern because they think the girl child is grown and needs to feed herself.  So when the girl goes out and could not withstand the peer pressure,  she  falls for it and this results in unwanted pregnancy.”

“I’ve got three sons, but I’m very careful and tight with them. I make sure they go to bed before I  do, and I mostly advise them on how useless they will become in society if they engaged in hard drugs and alcohol,” Ms Aseye said.

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