This is because proper and accurate adolescent sexual health and rights information from appropriate source was a critical prerequisite for their personal development and growth.

Speaking at a capacity building workshop for some selected youth leaders in the Ashanti region in Kumasi, Mr Amponsah charged the youth to seek information from qualified health professionals and institutions.

“At this stage in an adolescent’s life, you need a lot of positive information.

You should not seek information from your peers, but rather from health officers, adolescent health centres, to guide you through that period,” he told the participants.

The programme organised by the NYA in collaboration with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) was aimed at sharpening the skills of the youth leaders on basic sexual reproductive health information and how to report on the activities that focuses on adolescent reproductive health.

The 50 participants drawn from Bosome Freho, Tafo, Adansi South, Jacobu, Amansie Central, Suame, Asokore Mampong and the Kumasi Metropolitan Assemblies, will act as peer educators to contribute to sensitization of their peers in their respective communities.

“This is a training of trainers, we are training the youth leaders so that they can go back to their various communities, groups and train the adolescents.

We want the dissemination to be widespread for the adolescents to catch up with this information to guide them in their daily activities,” he said.

Mrs Sandra Dankwa, Officer in-charge of Adolescent Health at the Regional NYA, said parents needed to pay attention to the changes in their adolescent children and always find time to speak to them about their sexual and reproductive health life.

She said apart from the need for parents to develop effective communication mechanisms with their adolescent children, they must also endeavour to provide for the basic needs of their children to prevent them from giving themselves to men in exchange for money and other items.

According to her, abstinence from sex was the best way to prevent adolescents from unwanted pregnancies, sexually transmitted infections (STI’s) and other diseases.

She said appropriate sexual reproductive health information was key to curbing the unwanted pregnancies.

Mrs Dankwa reminded the participants of the critical role they had to play in educating their peers and making a positive influence on their sexual life.

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