Enhancing the health, social, and economic capabilities of highly vulnerable adolescents for protection against HIV and adverse SRH outcomes
Presentation at Population Association of America Annual Meeting, Detroit, 30 April
Publication date: 2009
We present baseline findings from an intervention randomized to secondary schools in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. School enrollment is very high here, so this is a good strategy for reaching a representative group and reducing possible selection bias. The program goal is to provide vulnerable adolescents in poor HIV/AIDS-affected communities with increased capabilities for building health, social, and economic assets. Strategic skills are designed to offer protective strategies against HIV and early pregnancy and build assets. Statistically significant associations between economic variables and SRH/HIV behaviors show adolescents with more personal physical assets have more sexual partners but practice greater protective behaviors with those partners. Females in poorer households have older sexual partners, are the most likely to have been pregnant, and report having few friends (despite attending school). Females with savings are likelier to know about family planning. Males with savings are more likely to discuss avoiding pregnancy with partners.