SOUTH AFRICA: INTERNATIONAL DAY OF THE GIRL CHILD

Fours years now that the international day of observance supports more opportunity for girls and increases awareness of gender inequality faces by girls worldwide based upon their gender has started. With bases such as right to education, nutrition, legal rights, medical care, protection from discrimination, violence against women and unfree child marriage.

For this fourth anniversary, AHF Southern Africa will address the misconception of “Blessers” a glamourized word for sexual predators that is affecting hundreds and thousands of young women in Southern Africa.

About the Plight of the girl child in southern Africa, Larissa Klazinga from Aids Healthcare Foundation says that building self-esteem in children teenagers and young adults is critical to helping them make the decisions that lead to

healthy, happy lives.Meanwhile,it is very important in preventing them from becoming part of the demographic of school drop outs and teenage pregnancies, leaving them more vulnerable to sexual exploitation and substance abuse.

Young ladies aged between 15 and 24 are cited as being at an extremely high risk of contracting HIV.Almost three times higher than young men of the same age because of sexual abuse. The Aids Healthcare Foundation has been focusing on addressing the challenges faced by girls and women in 2016 and has carried out comprehensive surveys in South Africa,Uganda and Nigeria to identify how to make their services more girl-friendly.

It is sad to hear that in the modern era, young girls throughout Africa are still vulnerable to social ills and gender inequality under the guise of sugar daddies and so-called blessers,girls are risk of being victims of sexual violence and sexual predators. In the rural areas, those in the poorest of poor families use child grants as a means of

putting the food on the tables of the extended family. In Town, many young girls, desperate to participate in the opulence that surrounds them are lured into the net of drugs and alcohol as well as succumbing to sexual predators.

Otherwise, Education stay the best key in getting the word out about the dangers of early sexual activity and unsafe sex,which include HIV,STIs,Pregnancy and increased risk of cervical cancer.Klazinga added that even though condoms and other contraceptives are readily available at clinics, teenagers need to have access to confidential contraceptive services and sexual education at schools. Men also need to be encouraged to take responsibility and engage in safe sexual behaviour by using condoms, remaining faithful to one sexual partner and by fighting the abusive Blesser culture which encourages men to prey on girls and younger women.

According for the statistics, nearly 2000 young women between the ages of 15 and 24 being infected per week in south Africa by the hiv-

infection.Nevertheless, Aids healthcare Foundation will continue to campaign,educate,counsel,test and treat anyone and everyone who is affected by this disease. They provides medical care and services to more than 600000 individuals in 36 countries worldwide in Africa and so on.

CARINE MAMBOU

 

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