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Gender Committee calls for tailored initiatives to address challenges faced by Teenage Mothers


Gender Committee calls for tailored initiatives to address challenges faced by Teenage Mothers

Flavia Kabahenda, Chairperson of the Parliamentary Committee on Gender, Labor, and Social Development, has urged the government to include teenage mothers in all wealth-creation programs nationwide. Kabahenda made this appeal during the sixth National Girl Summit held at Silver Springs in Bugoloobi, Kampala.

Highlighting the existing programs such as Emyooga and the Parish Development model, Kabahenda pointed out the absence of initiatives specifically tailored for teenage mothers. She emphasized that current programs primarily target youth, overlooking the distinctive challenges faced by teenage mothers.

The Woman MP of Kyegegwa recounted a poignant example from her district, citing a 16-year-old girl with two children and a current pregnancy who is not benefiting from any government programs.

While acknowledging ongoing efforts to protect young girls, Kabahenda stressed the importance of redirecting some focus toward boys. She proposed promoting balanced parenting and involving boys in critical discussions to effectively tackle the challenges at hand.

Adrian Mukiibi, a representative from the Nabagereka Foundation, acknowledged prevalent cultural practices contributing to teenage pregnancies and child marriages, expressing their struggle against such community challenges. Mukiibi highlighted their adoption of the “obuntu bulamu” slogan, urging people to embrace humility in their actions.

Jeff Wadulo, the Program and Policy Coordinator of the Civil Society Budgeting Advocacy Group, underscored the necessity to intensify the fight against poverty in households. He emphasized the role of parents in caring for their children and implementing measures to prevent early marriages.

Wadulo stated, “Underage marriages are prevalent in northern and Eastern Uganda, so if we fight poverty in these areas, we can indirectly combat child marriages.”

Presenting data from the Ministry of Gender, National Symposium on Ending Child Marriage and Teenage Pregnancy, Lydia Wasula reported a one percent reduction in the number of teenage mothers aged 15-19 since 2016 to the present date.





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