July 2012

Engaging communities to address teenage pregnancy in South Africa: A summary report from the Zola community in Soweto, Gauteng Province

Ibis Reproductive Health. Engaging communities to address teenage pregnancy in South Africa: A summary report from the Zola community in Soweto, Gauteng Province. July 2012

Teenage pregnancy is considered a serious problem in South Africa but contributing factors are not well understood. Reasons for teenage pregnancy differ depending on the situation, and decision making around sex and pregnancy is complex. Building on the results of research conducted by Ibis Reproductive Health with young women and community members in Soweto, Gauteng Province, in 2007-2009, Ibis conducted a follow-up project in 2010-2011 in both Soweto and the N’wamitwa community near Tzaneen, Limpopo Province. The overall project objective was to engage young women, parents and guardians of young women, and community stakeholders to play an active role in addressing teenage pregnancy, HIV, and other sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) issues in their communities. One component of the project involved participatory research designed to elicit a better understanding of the perceived contributing factors to teenage pregnancy and community members’ perspectives regarding possible solutions.