Program on Adolescence Education
Adolescence is a period of rapid development when the young acquire new capacities and are faced with new challenges. They are in a stage which according to Sigmund Freud is marked with egos that leads to some sort of superiority and or inferiority complex. With increased level of awareness, logical& critical thinking and problem solving they are involved in establishing their social identity. It is therefore, not only a time of opportunity but also of vulnerability to risk endeavors or behaviors which can have life long consequences especially for health.
They have the right to a safe and supportive environment, to accurate and age appropriate information, to guidance in skill building and empowerment, to positive role models with friendly health services and effective counseling.
So to prepare these young people for life and work in a rapidly changing world, educational and training systems need to be re-oriented to impart and enhance a range of life skills in students. This will enable them to manifest / exhibit their inner potential with confidence and competence, thereby facing both present & future challenges in life.
Hence, every nation, society and communities have to reach the level where they can participate towards promoting adolescence health. The formula is simple Knowledge, Attitude and Skills (KAS).
The program on Adolescence Education addresses the following critical question:
Which health problems affect adolescents and what can be done to prevent and respond to them?
Many mental health problems emerge in late childhood and early adolescence. Enhancing social skills, problem-solving skills and self confidence can help prevent mental health problems such as conduct disorders, anxiety, depression and eating disorders as well as other risk behaviours including those that relate to sexual behaviour, substance use, and violent behaviour. Health workers need to have the competencies to relate to young people, to detect mental health problems early, and to provide treatments which include counselling, cognitive-behavioural therapy and, where appropriate, psychotropic medication.
In addition to laws that limit the availability of illicit substances, tobacco and alcohol, interventions to reduce demand for these substances improve the conditions for healthy development. Increasing their awareness of the dangers of substance use, building their competence to resist peer pressure and to manage stress in a healthy manner is effective in reducing adolescents' motivation for substance use.
Life skills and social development programmes for children and adolescents are important for reducing violent behaviour. Supporting teachers and parents to build skills in problem solving and non-violent disciplining is also effective in reducing violence. If and when violence does occur, actions to make health systems more responsive, and to build the empathy and competence of health workers, can help ensure that adolescents who experience violence, including sexual violence, get effective and sensitive care and treatment. Ongoing psychological and social support can help adolescents deal with the long term psychological effects of violence, and to reduce the likelihood of their becoming perpetuators of violence in the future.
Approaches for reducing road traffic crashes, and the occurrence of serious injuries if and when crashes occur, are important for safeguarding adolescent health. These include:
- enforcing speed limits.
- combining education with laws to promote seat belt (and helmet) use and to prevent driving under the influence of alcohol or other psychoactive substances.
- providing alternatives to driving by increasing the availability of safe and inexpensive public transport.
Sexual and reproductive health
Programmes that aim to educate adolescents about sexual and reproductive health need to be combined with programmes aimed at motivating them to apply what they have learnt in their lives. They should also be combined with efforts to make it easier for adolescents to obtain any preventive or curative health services they might need from competent and empathetic health workers. Sexual coercion in adolescence needs to be fought at different levels. Laws requiring severe punishment for this crime should be passed and energetically enforced, and public opinion should be mobilized to become fiercely intolerant of it. Girls and women should be protected from sexual harassment and coercion in educational institutions, work places and in other community settings. the survival of mothers and their babies, and the prevention of problems such as fistulas.
Young people’s risk of HIV infection is closely correlated with age of sexual debut. Abstinence from sexual intercourse and delayed initiation of sexual behaviour are among the central aims of HIV prevention efforts for young people. Decreasing the number of sexual partners and increasing access to, and utilization of comprehensive prevention services, including prevention education and provision of condoms, are essential for young people who are sexually active. Programmes should also focus on prevention and early intervention in other health risk behaviours, such as substance use. Young people need HIV testing services that are accessible and appropriate. Young people living with HIV need treatment, care, support and positive prevention services. All HIV services for young people should involve young people living with HIV in their planning and provision.
The overall main objective of training the teachers / students on Adolescence Education is to create awareness on the critical areas of Mental Health, Violence, Substance Use, Sexual & Reproductive Medicine, HIV etc. The programs bottom line sole objective is to bring the key X Factors Knowledge, Attitudes & Skills (KAS). The final outcome once these objectives are grounded culminates to the firm belief that one is able to have within him or herself.
Thus objective will finally culminate to them having;
The Knowledge provides a factual background on which to base your decisions. It empowers you to move in the right direction. It will give you the sence of knowing what to choose and what to ignore. It will also give one the direction to explain their peers to choosing the rights versus the wrongs.
The Attitude provides a personal perception for decisions, such as feeling responsible for one's own health and the health of others.
The Skill provides you the self confidence to trasact and therefore implement in the relavent practical situation that anybody may come accross. No matter what and where after getting the three KAS you will have a strong belief which will always make you go the right way.
The desired outcome of this program will be to equip our students through trained teachers who will guide them as to what are the rights (DO’s) and the wrongs (DONT’s) that we need to know when we address such critical situations at any given point of our lives.