| Nov 13, 2023
HOPE BEGINS WITH EDUCATION
Girls education and mentorship summit
In Zambia, just like most parts in the Southern Africa, the prevalence of teenage pregnancy is high and a prominent issue in social, political, and cultural discourse. In 2018, teenage pregnancy was estimated at 29.2%, making Zambia one of the countries with significantly high prevalence of teenage pregnancy among Sub-Sahara African countries.
Adolescent pregnancy remains a key public health and development concern globally, especially in many low- and middle-income countries (LMICS). It is estimated that approximately 16 million girls aged 15–19 years, as well as an additional one (1) million below 15 years, give birth in LMICs. Adolescent pregnancy has detrimental and far-reaching consequences for the majority of adolescent girls for the rest of their lives as it perpetuates poverty, deprives them of education, increases health risks and girl-child vulnerabilities while at the same time putting them in harm’s way and exposing them to violence and poverty. In the result, adolescent pregnancy may have negative and unintended knock-on effects on many Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs),
The prevalence of adolescent pregnancy in Africa remains rather unacceptably high. For instance, a recent systematic review indicated that the prevalence of adolescent pregnancy was 18.8% in Africa as a whole, and 19.3% in sub-Saharan Africa. Zambia, as indicated below, undoubtedly has one of the highest adolescent pregnancy prevalence rates in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), conceivably with a significant attenuating effect on socio-economic development, riding on the fact that adolescents are a significant age group constituting 24% of the total population of Zambia. Over the last five years, the rate of adolescent pregnancy has remained very high at 29.2%, with at least 35% of young girls in rural areas giving birth before, or by, the age of 18 years according to the 2018 Zambia Demographic and Health Survey (ZDHS). There are significant rural-urban variations in adolescent pregnancies in Zambia, with rural areas having an average of 37% compared to 17% in urban areas. These averages potentially mask realities on the ground as some rural areas have adolescent pregnancy rates as high as 42.5% and 39.5% in North-western and Eastern Provinces respectively. Adolescent pregnancy is partly responsible for the high total fertility rate of 4.7 per woman and rapid population growth rate of 2.8% thus contributing about 20% of the total fertility rate in Zambia.
In order to respond to the above highlighted issues that are affecting girls and young women, Charity Centre for children and Youth Development (CCCYD) has invested in Education and mentorship for girls. So far, CCCYD has supported 21 girls with post secondary scholarship, 105 girls with mentorship through the community girls clubs, online mentorship with volunteer mentors from other countries targtting 250 children. We are also focusing on girls and women vocational skills training. 1500 children received primary and secondary education in Solwezi.
With your continued support, we shall reach more girls in the community. Join in us during the forthcoming Giving Tuesday to make more impact in the community.
Thank you all for your generosity.
Post secondary education scholarship beneficiary