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Project to reduce teen pregnancy gets $9m in budget

Jamaica Observer 2020-02-14 08:22:50

KINGSTON, Jamaica —  A project aimed at lowering teen pregnancy rates has received $9 million in the 2020/2021 Estimates of Expenditure, now before the House of Representatives.

The allocation, which is for the Technical Support to Reduce Teenage Pregnancy Programme, will go towards providing contraceptive commodities to 500 adolescent mothers, and conducting public awareness sessions on Adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health (ASRH) issues.

The initiative, which commenced in 2017, aims to reduce adolescent pregnancy rates in Jamaica, impact ASRH behaviour among boys and girls, increase public awareness of ASRH issues, as well as increase access to sexual and reproductive health services and commodities for adolescents.

Up to the end of 2019, an ASRH training manual and toolkit were completed, so too training for 60 healthcare workers and adolescent stakeholders to build their capacity to provide adolescent-friendly services.

The Government of Jamaica and Inter-American Development Bank (IDB)-funded project is being implemented by the National Family Planning Board.

It also provided condoms and pregnancy tests to adolescents in parishes with the highest fertility rates, and launched a media campaign, utilising traditional and social media platforms, to help in the reduction of teen pregnancy.