Views of Adults on Adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health: Qualitative Evidence from Ghana

Author(s)

Kofi Awusabo-Asare
, and
Akwasi Kumi-Kyereme
The time is now. Will you stand up for reproductive health and rights?

1. United Nations (UN), World Population Prospects: The
2002 Revision, Vol. II, New York: UN, 2003.
2. Ghana Statistical Service (GSS), 2000 Population and
Housing Census of Ghana, Accra, Ghana: GSS, 2002.
3. Ibid.
4. Ghana Health Service, Facts and Figures, Accra: Ghana
Health Service, 2005; GSS, 2002, op. cit. (see reference 2):
and Ghana Statistical Service. Poverty trends in Ghana in the
1990s. Accra, Ghana: Ghana Statistical Service, 2000.
5. GSS, Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research
(NMIMR) and ORC Macro, Ghana Demographic and Health
Survey 2003, ORC Macro, Calverton, MD, USA, 2004.
6. Ibid.
7. Ibid.
8. Ghana AIDS Commission, 2005 Annual Report, Accra:
Ghana AIDS Commission, 2006.
9. Ghana Health Service and National AIDS/STI Control
Programme, Report on AIDS Situation in Ghana, 2005, Accra:
Ghana Health Service and National AIDS/STI Control
Programme, 2006.
10. Ibid.; and GSS, NMIMR and ORC Macro, 2004, op. cit.
(see reference 5).
11. Ghana Health Service and National AIDS/STI Control
Programme, 2006, op. cit. (see reference 9).
12. World Bank, World Development Report 2007:
Development and the Next Generation, Washington, DC:
World Bank, 2007.
13. The first three phases of the project have been published
as Guttmacher Occasional Reports Nos. 13, 22 and 30.
14. Awusabo-Asare K, Interpretations of demographic concepts:
the case of Ghana, Population and Development
Review, 1988, 14(4):675–687.
15. For a full description of the selected districts, see KumiKyereme
A, Awusabo-Asare K and Biddlecom A,
Adolescents’ sexual and reproductive health: qualitative evidence
from Ghana, Occasional Report, New York:
Guttmacher Institute, 2007, No. 30.
16. The Assembly and Unit Committees are the lowest
administrative structures in the country. The Unit Committees
represent people in a neighborhood and a set of unit committees
elect a member to represent them at the Metropolitan/
Municipal/District Assembly.
17. Thumbprinting is the method adopted in Ghana for
endorsing documents due to low adult literacy rates; it is also
used for voting.
18. Bronfenbrenner U, The Ecology of Human Development,
Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1979.
19. The official policy is that such girls should be admitted
back into their old school or assisted to enter another school.
But invariably, most of such girls do not return to school due
to a number of factors, including their new status as mothers,
and the shame associated with premarital pregnancy.
20. This means that they look like poor, shabbily dressed
housemaids who are helping to take care of their employer’s
baby.
21. Bleek W, Avoiding shame: the ethical context of abortion
in Ghana, Anthropological Quarterly, 1981, 54(4):203–209.
22. Ghana AIDS Commission, National HIV/AIDS Strategic
Framework II: 2006–2010, Accra: Ghana AIDS Commission,
2005.
23. Akwara PA et al., An In-Depth Analysis of HIV
Prevalence in Ghana: Further Analysis of Demographic and
Health Surveys Data, Calverton, MD, USA: ORC Macro,
2005.
24. Awusabo-Asare K, Anarfi JK and Agyeman DK,
Women‘s control over their sexuality and the spread of STDs
and HIV/AIDS in Ghana, Health Transition Review, 1993,
3(Suppl.):69–84.
25. Awumbila M and Ardayfio-Schandorf E, The gendered
face of poverty: female porters in Accra, Ghana, in AwusaboAsare
K, Agyei-Mensah S and Jorgensen SH, eds., The
Changing Face of Poverty in Ghana, Proceedings of NTNU
Workshop, University Cape Coast, Cape Coast, Ghana, 2005;
and Tanle A, Rural-urban migration of females from the Wa
district to Kumasi and Accra: a case study of the kaya yei phenomenon,
unpublished M. Phil. thesis, University of Cape
Coast, 2003.
26. Awusabo-Asare K et al., Adolescent sexual and reproductive
health in Ghana: results from the 2004 National
Survey of Adolescents, Occasional Report, New York:
Guttmacher Institute, 2006, No. 22.
27. Even now that premarital pregnancy no longer attracts
punitive measures, among the Akan, a man who is involved in
a premarital pregnancy is made to pay a fine to the parents of
the woman involved. The fine is referred to as domfre, which
literally means “fine for taking what does not belong to you”.
28. Sarpong PK, Girls’ Nubility Ashanti Rites, Tema: Ghana
43
Publishing Corporation, 1977.
29. Awusabo-Asare K et al., Adolescent sexual and reproductive
health in Ghana: a synthesis of research evidence,
Occasional Report, New York: The Alan Guttmacher Institute,
2004, No. 13.
30. Bleek W, 1981, op. cit. (see reference 21).
31. Abortion is only legal if the pregnancy threatens the
physical or mental health of the mother or the unborn child, or
if it is the result of rape of a minor or a person with mental disability
(Act 29).
32. Ghana AIDS Commission, 2005, op. cit. (see reference
23).
33. There have been newspaper reports on conflicts between
teachers and parents. See, for example, Aklorbortu MK,
Teacher humiliated before pupils, The Mirror, July 21, 2007,
p. 31.
34. See, for instance, UN Population Fund (UNFPA),
Investing in People: National Progress in Implementing the
ICPD Programme of Action, 1994–2004, New York: UNFPA,
2004.
35. Awusabo-Asare K et al., 2006, op. cit. (see reference 27).
36. Kumi-Kyereme A, Awusabo-Asare K, Biddlecom A and
Tanle A, Influence of social connectedness, communication
and monitoring on adolescent sexual activity in Ghana,
African Journal of Reproductive Health 2007, 11(3):133-147)
37. Awusabo-Asare K et al., 2006, op. cit. (see reference 27).
38. Ghana News Agency, Northern Region is short of doctors,
Feb. 13, 2007, <http://www.ghanaweb.com/
GhanaHomePage/NewsArchive/artikel.php?ID=119092>,
accessed May 16, 2008.
39. Katz K and Naré C, Reproductive health knowledge and
use of services among young adults in Dakar, Senegal, Journal
of Biosocial Science, 2002, 34(2):215–231.
40. Erulkar AS, Onoka CJ and Phiri A, What is youthfriendly?
adolescents’ preferences for reproductive health
services in Kenya and Zimbabwe, African Journal of
Reproductive Health, 2005, 9(3):51–58.
41. Awusabo-Asare K et al., 2006, op. cit. (see reference 27).
42. Speizer IS, Magnani RJ and Colvin CE, The effectiveness
of adolescent reproductive health interventions in developing
countries: a review of the evidence, Journal of
Adolescent Health, 2003, 33(5):324–348.
43. Awusabo-Asare K et al., 2006, op. cit. (see reference 27).
44. Bronfenbrenner U, 1979, op. cit. (see reference 18).
45. Kumi-Kyereme A, Awusabo-Asare K and Biddlecom A,
Adolescents’ sexual and reproductive health: qualitative evidence
from Ghana, Occasional Report, New York:
Guttmacher Institute, 2007, No. 30.
46. Jeejebhoy SJ and Bott S, Non-consensual Sexual
Experiences of Young People: A Review of Evidence from
Developing Countries, New Delhi: Population Council, 2003.
47. Blanc AK and Grey S, Greater than expected fertility
decline in Ghana: untangling a puzzle, Journal of Biosocial
Science, 2002, 34(4):475–495.

Topic

Global

Geography