Population Association of America (PAA) 2012 Annual Meeting
"Siyakha Nentsha: A randomized experiment to enhance the health, social and financial capabilities of girls and boys in Kzn, South Africa"
Kelly Hallman, Eva Roca, Kasthuri Govender, Maria C. Calderon,* Emmanuel Mbatha, Michael Rogan, Hannah Taboada, Jennifer Fauls, and Raven E. Brown
To respond to social and economic challenges that make HIV and AIDS threats to adolescents in the South African context, the Isihlangu Health and Development Agency developed a school-based life-skills programme for female and male adolescents. The programme, Siyakha Nentsha (SN), provides context-appropriate strategies to enhance participants’ financial skills, social support and HIV/AIDS knowledge and skills. The intervention was randomly allocated in secondary schools within a rural district and led by trained young adult mentors from local communities. Compared with the control group, SN boys reported having significantly fewer sexual partners, higher levels of abstinence and greater knowledge/skills for accessing entitlements. SN girls reported more interactions with financial institutions and feeling more socially included in the communities. Life orientation that includes practical skills can help young people reduce their risk for HIV, become more financially empowered and better manage the stresses of transitioning to adulthood within a challenging environment.
* Fred H. Bixby fellow
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