WHO representative to Namibia Monir Islam said this when he addressed the First National School Health Forum Thursday in the capital Windhoek.


The two-day forum that ends Friday brought together health experts to review the school health program started three years by the health ministry in conjunction with the Finnish National Institute for Health and Welfare.

Namibia adopted the concept from the WHO Global School Health Initiative in 1998 to empower school-going children with knowledge and skills to make informed decisions about their health and well-being.

Islam said WHO will help the Namibian government to make schools safer and provide a conducive environment for learning.

“One of the key follow-up actions we aim to partner with is the review of the school health policy to make it more integrated with the specific implementation plan monitoring and evaluation system,” said Islam.

A deputy permanent secretary in the health ministry, Norbert Foster, told the forum that Namibian children are engaging in sexual activities at the age of 11 and that most of them are not being taught about HIV/AIDS.

In 2004, Foster said 30 percent of school-going children had had sex at 11 and that 53.5 percent had never heard about HIV/AIDS.

Foster also said in 2013, 53.75 percent children aged between 13 and 17 had engaged in sexual activities, with 78 percent of them having used condoms and another 42.9 percent on birth control.

Health minister Bernard Haufiku Wednesday expressed concern with the high rate of HIV infections among teenagers. Enditem

Source: Xinhua


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