Causes of teenage pregnancy in Kampala, Nakawa Division
Lamunu, Tracy Aneno
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Teenage pregnancy is one of the most recurring phenomena in Uganda for which a number of initiatives have been planned and implemented for its prevention and reduction of the rate of prevalence. Some of these interventions include; comprehensive sex education, youth friendly services (YFS) in public health facilities, HIV/AIDS awareness campaigns among others. However with all these in place, teenage pregnancy is still recognized as one of the major problems affecting young people. The focus of this study was to determine the factors that contribute towards or cause teenage pregnancy in Nakawa Division of Kampala District. The researcher used the qualitative approach to obtain data from a sample of 8 ladies ages 15 to 20 years who had ever experienced teenage pregnancy/motherhood along with 4 care takers and 2 local community leaders bringing the number to 14 participants for the study. Interviews (individual mostly) were conducted to gain first-hand information regarding the causes of teenage pregnancy in Kampala. In the study, poverty was a leading contributory factor to teenage pregnancy where young girls engaged in sexual activity in exchange for money and material returns to cope. Ignorance as well as the attitude on moral values regarding teenage pregnancy were also contributory as noted from the respondents of the study along with a number of other factors attributed as causes such as rape and defilement, peer pressure and substance abuse. The study revealed that despite the high prevalence of teenage pregnancy in Nakawa Division, Kampala District there is a determination to further work towards eliminating the phenomenon and reducing the prevalence rate within the communities using the strengths of on-going interventions and revising the weaknesses to improve the impact of the interventions.