Children's Health HIV Prevention OurHealth Reproductive Health Sexuality

Rural health workers take sex ed into the classroom

Written by Suprise Nemalale

Health workers and home-based care givers from Limpopo’s Matavehela village recently spent the day at the local secondary school to take sex education out of the clinic and into the classroom.

According to Matavhela Secondary School student  Thabelo Munyai, many girls drop out after falling pregnant. Those that continue schooling face harsh teasing from peers, she said.

According to Matavhela Secondary School student Thabelo Munyai, many girls drop out after falling pregnant. Those that continue schooling face harsh teasing from peers, she said. (File photo)

“Everyday we see learners skipping school to go to the bushes in pairs,” said Marther Mathegu, a home-based caregiver with the Matavhela Home-based Care organisation. “We decided to bring the message to (learners) at school so that we can let them know how to protect themselves”.

Matavehela Clinic nurse Mashudu Nekhavhambe said the recent day-long outreach helped fill the gap in sexual and reproductive health counselling that nurses like herself often do not get to provide.

“(Learners) don’t like coming to the clinic for sessions about HIV so we took our time to travel here to inform them about HIV,” she told OurHealth. “They must know that HIV is real and that it’s here.”

Matavhela Secondary School student 19-year-old Thabelo Munyai said she appreciated the visit.

“The fact that nurses and home-based carers took their time to come and visit us is something to prove that they really care about the future of our community,” said Munyai, who described high rates of teen pregnancy at the school.

“Many of us drop out of school due to teenage pregnancy,” she said. “Some stay at school but (face) pressure from other learners who tease them.”

“I think with the information that we got from the health workers, (we) will reduce the rate of teenage pregnancy at our school,” she added. – Health-e News.

About the author

Suprise Nemalale

Suprise Nemalale is an OurHealth Citizen Journalist reporting from Limpopo's Vhembe Health District.