Adolescents’ childbearing dynamics in urban Mozambique: a qualitative analysis in Maputo, Quelimane and Lichinga cities
AbstractDespite the implementation of some policies and programs aimed at reducing early and unsafe adolescent sexual activity, adolescent pregnancy and childbearing are major concerns in Mozambique. About 40% of adolescents aged 15 to 19 are already mothers or pregnant. In light of this high prevalence of early motherhood, this paper aims at discussing socioeconomic and cultural factors influencing adolescent pregnancy and childbearing in urban Mozambique. We use the socioecological perspective framework to analyze focus group discussions data with adolescents, parents and community leaders in the cities of Maputo, Quelimane, and Lichinga. The study reveals that instructions transmitted in the initiation rites, living conditions and the exposure to information and communication technology are the main factors influencing early pregnancy and childbearing among adolescents in Mozambique. Adolescents should be empowered on knowledge about sexuality to prevent early childbearing, and protect them from STIs. Parents should be encouraged to talk openly about sexuality with their children.
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