Universal Journal of Public Health Vol. 3(2), pp. 55 - 64
DOI: 10.13189/ujph.2015.030202
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The Perceptions of Community Change through Promoting Positive Sexual Health: A Teenage Pregnancy Program Evaluation


Quynh Lê 1,*, Stuart Auckland 1, Hoang Boi Nguyen 1, Daniel R Terry 2
1 Centre for Rural Health, University of Tasmania, Australia
2 Department of Rural Health, Melbourne Medical School, The University of Melbourne, Australia

ABSTRACT

Teenage pregnancy is associated with adverse social, economic and health outcomes for both mother and child. The factors frequently associated with teenage pregnancy or related sexual health issues include teenagers' knowledge, attitudes, and beliefs about sex and other social-economic factors such as levels of poverty, academic success or failure, and parents' education. This paper reports on the evaluation of a teenage pregnancy program conducted in the Southern and North Western regions of Tasmania to address the high levels of teenage pregnancy and sexually transmitted infection (STIs) in these regions. The aim of the study was to examine the effectiveness of the Teenage Pregnancy Programs by examining any evidence for a community change in attitudes and behaviours, and any changes in youth awareness about sexual health. The study adopted a qualitative approach and data were collected from a total of 25 participants (17 who were interviewed and eight who participated in focus groups) residing in the target regions. Data were analysed using thematic analysis using Nvivo 9.0. The study results indicated that the program was well managed and delivered. There were reported changes in the awareness, attitudes and behaviours regarding sexual health within the target communities, which were considered necessary for young people to make well informed choices. The evaluation of the program provides valuable knowledge regarding the processes and outcomes that may have application in future community based sexual health initiatives may be delivered into regional communities.

KEYWORDS
Teen Pregnancy, Sexual Health, Socioeconomic Disadvantage, Behavioural Change, Community-based Interventions

Cite this paper
Quynh Lê , Stuart Auckland , Hoang Boi Nguyen , Daniel R Terry (2015). The Perceptions of Community Change through Promoting Positive Sexual Health: A Teenage Pregnancy Program Evaluation. Universal Journal of Public Health, 3 , 55 - 64. doi: 10.13189/ujph.2015.030202.