Online Program

Integrating sexuality education and violence prevention to reduce teenage pregnancy: A critical analysis of opportunities and challenges

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Jenifer DeAtley, LMSW, EngenderHealth, Austin, TX
Andrew Levack, MPH, Engender Health, Austin, TX
Jeni Brazeal, EngenderHealth, Austin, TX
Debra Kalmuss, PhD, Heilbrunn Dept. of Population and Family Health, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, New York, NY
Despite established literature linking intimate partner violence with poor sexual and reproductive outcomes, there is little integration of violence prevention and sexual health programs. In this presentation, we describe lessons learned from an innovative approach to linking the two communities by employing staff from an IPV program to facilitate the educational component of a gender transformative teen pregnancy prevention program. The is grounded in gender-transformative sexual health interventions conducted in resource poor countries. Adapting this gender-transformative platform to a small-group educational intervention in the US required us to move beyond traditional sexual health educators to identifying group facilitators who had experience with youth-based gender probing work. While this interdisciplinary approach to teen pregnancy prevention education provided much-needed expertise in gender work with teens, it also raised fundamental challenges, including gaps in key knowledge and skills about sexual health, different core concepts, and dissimilar pedagogical approaches to curriculum-based education. There were constructive perspectives that informed both fields. The IPV field emphasized the need to address consent and refusal as skills, and the idea that sex is not a decision made at one point in time, but instead should be made at each occurrence of intimacy for a young person. Additionally, the sexual health field lends a comfortable and sex positive approach to discussions around contraception and intimacy. This presentation is intended to lay the groundwork for an overlap in these two fields and provide lessons learned from a program that has approached this integration.

Learning Areas:

Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Program planning

Learning Objectives:
Describe the link between Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRH) and Interpersonal Violence (IPV) fields. Analyze the need to integrate the fields of SRH and IPV for improved sexual health outcomes. Compare both challenges and compliments of integrating the SRH and IPV fields.

Keyword(s): Youth, Prevention

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have been working in the field of sexual health and teenage pregnancy prevention for 20 years, have developed and co-developed several programs, and have managed numerous grant funded projects.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

Back to: 4374.0: Prevention of teen pregnancy