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According to the World Bank report on teenage pregnancy in 2012 at the age of 19, almost 1 in 5 young women in Peru have already had a child. It is a fact that the Latin American and Caribbean region has one of the highest teenage fertility rates in our world therefore teenage pregnancy is a big issue for this region, and specifically for Peru. To address this situation, we must improve the school’s performance and Improve sex education. Inequality is the key factor; the lack of education and resources have an important effect after the mother gives birth.15 of every 100 teenagers under 16 years in Peru are mothers, the main reason for this problem is the low socio-economic status and the lack of information. According to policies if we reduce the prevalence of teenage pregnancy the economic situation of women is going to improve. For teenage mothers, childbearing is often associated with a lower chance of being part of formal education at age 19. Teenage mothers only stay at home dealing with household labors, this is more likely to have a long run effect on woman’s employability. In addition to the social problems of teenage pregnancies, there are also medical facts to take into consideration. “Statistics of the World Health Organization show that adolescents have a higher probability (between 20 and 200 percent) of dying due to pregnancy causes than an adult woman”, says physician Ernesto Sanchez.
It is well known that the Peruvian society has an extremely conservative thinking and sex education doesn’t exist in families and schools. How are we going to change this behavior in the educational system? We can’t change the society’s mentality from day to night, changing the society’s thoughts is going to be a slow process. A great example of a creative way to address this problem is the initiative presented by “Save the Children” called Real problems. This project consists of changing the usual math problems for other ones who are related to “responsibilities of a mother” to show the teenagers the reality of the situation. This idea is already a project financed by “Save the Children” which is an NGO, more than 150,000 worksheets were already distributed. This NGO is already working with the Peruvian ministry of education, math is becoming the best tool to overcome this problem and we must keep improving this project and the quality of the education.
Probably people would state that this idea is crazy “why it is necessary to talk about this problem in an indirect way?” is not that easy as just make teachers give sex education to the teenagers because maybe they are going to feel uncomfortable or awkward, but as mentioned early ironically math is becoming the best option to solve a great social problem. More than 60,000 exams were already taken by the students and they have shown improvements. A child without access to education is going to live in poverty all his life, that is why Peru should focus more on education and protecting the rights of the children’s.
By improving the school’s performances with the project “Real Problems” Teenagers are going to have good quality sex education in public schools. If we keep doing this the numbers of teenage pregnancy cases are going to go down. People must understand that big changes don’t happen so easy, it requires years to change the thoughts of an entire population. Even though is difficult we must support and encourage more programs like this. But the reality is that the parents have the same responsibilities as the state. Help your son or daughter understand the responsibility that requires being a mother or father, teach them contraceptive methods, and keep promoting and encouraging projects to your community.
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