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Africa: Health Education

Volume 474: debated on Monday 21 April 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what steps his Department is taking to encourage programmes promoting sex education and providing contraceptives in Africa. (197281)

The Department for International Development (DFID) works with partner governments to improve access to sexual and reproductive health services and commodities through DFID funded country programmes.

DFID is helping nine developing countries—including South Africa, Uganda and Kenya to strengthening curricula for gender education, including sex education, by funding a £35 million programme called ‘transitions to adulthood’. DFID also supports the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in encouraging the development of life skills programmes for school children and out of school youth, which cover issues relating to safe sex and responsible sexual behaviour.

DFID has recently announced £100 million over five years to the United Nations Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA) to improve access to family planning and reproductive health supplies. DFID is also one of the largest supporters of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (GFATM), providing £100 million in 2007. GFATM supports both sex education and condom distribution as part of its broader strategy to fight AIDS.