The Inform Choices for Change (IC4C) Project funded by AXIS-Denmark seeks to enhance the provision of age and content appropriate Reproductive Health Education (RHE) to young people by equipping teachers with the relevant knowledge and skills needed to teach RHE in schools.
The IC4C project is building on four successive interventions that created awareness on sexuality education developed and implemented participatory manuals and models on sexuality education and generally strengthened communities and state institutions to deliver comprehensive sexuality education in schools and communities in limited areas of the country. The previous projects (ISEP I, II III and IV) implemented by Norsaac and Axis-Denmark, demonstrated that sexuality education has contributed to reduce teenage pregnancy in implementing areas by up to 50%, increased girls’ retention by up to 70%, deepened teacher-student relationship and reduced school dropout by 65% with pregnant girls allowed to continue school.
The ISEP IV, focused on national advocacy and drew on experiences from participatory approaches to delivering SRHR. In this phase, two (2) colleges of education were engaged to pilot the teaching of SRHR with 60 student teachers (30 in each school) being trained successfully using the Alternative Choice Manual which was developed in the second phase of the project. This enhanced the capacity and skills of the student teachers in delivering quality RHE to students and broadened their scope and knowledge on ways of engaging pupils. Prior to the intervention, an assessment in one of the colleges revealed that only 5 out of the 30 student teachers could confidently discuss RHE. The intervention boosted the confidence of these student teachers to discuss RHE and position them to better deliver RHE to pupils. It also helped demystify some misconceptions that the student teachers had about RHE and enhanced their knowledge to be able to demystify misconceptions among their peers and young people
The fifth phase of the project (IC4C) will continue national level advocacy to get RHE standardized into the GES school curriculum. Going forward, Norsaac will continue to focus on working with the colleges of education to diversify teaching approaches to encourage active student participation, promote practical skills, confidence, and agency to deliver RHE accurately and effectively. This will contribute to evidence which shall be used to engage government and key stakeholders (National Council for Tertiary Education, Ministry of Education) on practical ways of teaching RHE and ensure its inclusion in the colleges’ curriculum. One approach to be employed will be to strengthen existing youth groups/networks to form a strong movement to advocate for comprehensive information and skills on RHE for all young people in Ghana. Another strategy is to join forces with other CSOs working within the arena of RHE, coordinate and convene them to develop a strategy for common RHE advocacy focusing on the same content, participatory approaches and advocating for the approval and implementation of the RHE guidelines. Advocacy at the national level is key to this intervention and will be tackled using various approaches such as National RHE Forum, media campaigns, and participation in strategic meetings at the national level.
In view of this, the new intervention will seek to achieve the following objectives:
- By 2025, 4 colleges of education within 3 regions of the North will adopt and implement the national guidelines within 3 regions of the North.
- By 2025, a revised national guideline on RHE in Ghana has been approved, launched, and included in the curriculum (Primary and JHS) by the mandated National Authorities.
The project will span from January 2022 to December 2025.