Sexual behaviour in relation to awareness of HIV/AIDS among secondary school girls in Nairobi
This study was designed to investigate sexual behaviour and awareness of HIV/AIDS among secondary school girls in Nairobi. Fieldwork for the study was conducted between October 1994 and January 1995. The schools and respondents were obtained through simple random sampling. A total of 113 respondents were interviewed. The methods used in obtaining information for this study were library research, interviews and focus group discussions. The data were analyzed through quantitative and qualitative approaches. The study was based on three assumptions: first,lack of adequate awareness on the HIV I AIDS phenomenon has contributed to negative attitudes towards infection. Second, parents create awareness on the HIV I AIDS among secondary school girls in Nairobi. And, last, lack of adequate awareness on HIVI AIDS among the targeted population has led to irresponsible sex. The study revealed that most of the girls are conversant with what HIV and AIDS are as well as with modes of transmission and possible preventive measures against infection. Therefore, their negative attitudes towards infection are due to the social stigma that is associated with AIDS. Moreover, the study revealed that irresponsible sexual behaviour among these people cannot be attributed to lack of adequate awareness on HIV / AIDS. The factors that enhance irresponsible sex are material gain, negative attitudes towards condoms, security, assessment of one's partner and prestige. Lastly, the study found that some parents create awareness on the HIV / AIDS amongst their daughters. Other sources of information reported were teachers, the mass media, relatives and peers. On the basis of the findings, the study recommends that more awareness should be created on AIDS as well as issues related to sex. In addition, the youth to youth approach was found to be appropriate in disseminating information. And, lastly, campaigns on the use of condoms as a means of preventing STDs and AIDS should be carried out among adolescents.