Reproductive Health Guide for Youth in Western Kenya Open Access

Gikuhi, Samantha (Spring 2019)

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Background: Young people in Kenya experience poor sexual and reproductive health outcomes like unwanted pregnancy and maternal mortality and morbidity from unsafe abortions because of barriers at the individual, community and structural level that limit access to reproductive health information.

Purpose: As part of Closing the Gap, an ongoing family planning and safe abortion service delivery and advocacy project in Kenya, this special studies project will serve as a tool to educate young people on family planning and unsafe abortion. Pertinent themes that will be discussed are personal and method related considerations for contraceptive methods, safe abortion options, and community resources that young people can leverage to protect themselves from unsafe abortions.

Methods: Qualitative research methodologies like informal key interviews and document analysis were used to assess the need for a tool that young people could consult to make decisions about their reproductive health. Findings were analyzed using thematic analysis to investigate key themes that formed the modules of Reproductive Health Guide.

Results: This Reproductive Health Guide has 3 modules; primary, secondary and tertiary prevention methods that explore methods young people can use to protect themselves against unwanted pregnancies and unsafe abortion. The modules also highlight community resources where young people can seek sexual reproductive information and health services.

Discussion:  Stigma and conservative religious norms pose a barrier to young people realizing their sexual reproductive health rights yet there is overwhelming evidence that shows that unmarried youth are sexually active. Improving access to comprehensive and accurate reproductive health information empowers young people to make informed decisions about their reproductive goals and seek family planning methods that align with their comfort levels and lifestyles. 

Table of Contents


Background and Significance 1

Problem Statement 4

Purpose Statement 5

Project Objectives 5

Literature Review  7

Harm Reduction 7

Reproductive empowerment 9

Methods 13

Results 15

Module 1: Primary Prevention Methods 15

           1.1 Personal considerations for contraception 15

          1.2 Emergency contraception methods: 20

Module 2: Secondary Prevention Methods 22

            2.1 Considering being a parent? 23

            2.2 Not ready to be a parent? 26

Module 3: Tertiary Prevention Methods 31

              3.1 Post Abortion Care 31

Discussion 32

Appendix 1: Contraception comfort and confidence scale 42

Appendix 2: How to use Misoprostol 44

Appendix 3: Will I Regret Having an Abortion? 45

Kisumu Medical& Education Trust (KMET) Letter of Request 46

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