Some youth groups championing sexual and reproductive health education and issues at their communities in the Upper East Region have been equipped with vocational skills in soap making.
The move was to provide them with economic empowerment for sustainable sources of funding to meet their basic needs and help carry out their activities in their communities.
The training was organised by the Upper East Regional Directorate of the National Youth Authority (NYA) under the auspices of the Regional Coordinating Council with funding from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).
The youth groups, drawn from Bongo, Builsa South, Bawku West, Nabdam, Kassena-Nankana West and Talensi Districts were given training in washing and bath soap making.
At a review meeting coupled with the training, Mr Francis Takyi-Koranteng, the Regional Director, NYA, said the youth groups had been equipped with Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights issues to enable them to engage their colleagues in their communities.
This was to provide the adolescents with accurate information to help them make informed decisions regarding their sexual life to help curb the rising teenage pregnancy.
He said the UNFPA project was in its final year, and it was imperative to provide sustainable funding sources for the youth groups to ensure that they sustained the campaign in their communities.
Ms Mary Azika, a midwife at the Bolgatanga Health Directorate of the Ghana Health Service, said teenage pregnancy continued to be a bane to the development of girls in the country, particularly in the Upper East Region.
She said most of the adolescents were sexually active and there was the need for stakeholders to provide them with education on safer sex to help them protect themselves against teenage pregnancy and Sexually Transmitted Infections.
“We started talking of abstinence not today, even though everybody is talking about abstinence, in the churches, mosques and homes, the teenage pregnancy is still increasing, and it is because most of the adolescents are sexually active.
“I do not think there is any parent who would ask the child to go and impregnate another child, but these boys and girls are sexually active, so as we continue to talk about abstinence, which is the best for them, it will be better we teach them safer sex so that they will protect themselves,” she added.
She advised the adolescents who are sexually active to desist from excessively using emergency contraceptives to avoid facing infertility challenges in the future, adding “we advise them to use condoms which can protect them against teenage pregnancy and STIs.”