Tana River youths alarmed by teen pregnancies

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The Hangafa youth group in Madogo, Tana River, has expressed alarm over increase in teenage pregnancies and early marriages.

And drug abuse and crime among boys.

Speaking during a one-day workshop at a Garissa hotel on Monday,  chairman Ahmed Amin urged students to concentrate on their education.

“As the schools close for KCPE and KCSE examinations, I urge all students to avoid peer pressure. Take time to nurture your talent so you can keep away from drug abuse, early pregnancies and marriages,” Amin said.

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The group is starting activities to keep young people occupied, including cleaning of town streets, football matches, composing songs, skits and mentorships in Madogo and Mororo.

The chairman said activities are meant to keep youth, especially school going children, away from drug abuse and crime.

Amin appealed to the county and national governments to support the group so they can cover more youths and centres across Bura constituency.

“Currently we are self-sponsored. We, therefore, appeal to both governments and other non-governmental organisations to help us sensitise youth. With the support, we shall widen our coverage and keep them from crime,”he said.

Hawa Ramadhan, the group’s secretary, said they were committed to securing the future of girls through education.

Hawa called on parents to monitor the activities of their children while at home on a long break..

Participants expressed their gratitude to the youth group and promised to abide by what they learnt.

“We are happy with Hangafa Youth Group for talking to us about teen pregnancies and drug abuse. I ask our boys to stop destroying their lives through drugs and substance abuse‚” said Abdirahaman Ali, the president of the students’ governing council.

Pregnancies among school children in Tana River was the highest in the country last year during the Covid-19 restrictions when schools remained closed for at least nine months..

President Uhuru Kenyatta early this year directed that all pregnant schoolgirls be registered, access antenatal care and return to school after delivering.

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