Princess Diana Wedaga Ayongo is a 21-year-old student at the University of Ghana Legon, where she reads Political science and History. As a volunteer for Youth Action Movement, the youth wing of Planned Parenthood Association of Ghana, Wedaga is passionate about youth development. She believes that the teenage pregnancy menace is stifling the growth of the youth in the country.
Relating to her experience, Wedaga mentioned how her parent skirted around the subject and never brought it up nor encouraged conversations around it in the house.
She said, “Growing up in my family, my parents always felt it was a taboo to talk about sex with us. We had the opportunity to hear it from the school. Even that there were just a few times that it made references to the subject.”
According to Wedaga, teenage pregnancies have skyrocketed in her community. And she believes the culture of silence is the principal contributing factor to this crisis. She explained that the world is changing along with certain aspects of our culture in these times. “Currently, the statistics on teenage pregnancy is alarming, and it is sad. It sends a message that we must come on board to curb the situation. I feel that the world is changing, but more work needs to be done on educating the youth. When it comes to issues of sex, we say it is ‘taboo’ and shy away from it.
Wedaga spoke about interventions that allow girls back into school during pregnancy and after delivery. “We must teach them that as a girl at this age, I would start menstruating. I would have to avoid certain things, and I do not have to engage in unprotected sex. I have to abstain, and in situations that I cannot abstain, what do I do? We know that they do it. Let us not pretend they don’t.”
“Since I was a kid, watching GMB has always been my favourite. I have never been apologetic about my roots. I have always loved who I am. I love the family and the region that I come from. I love what I stand for. I chose the GMB platform because I love myself, and I love my people. I am ready to show the world that this is what I represent. I am proud of it. And taking my project work into consideration, I feel like this platform would also help spread my message across.”
By Grace Somuah-Annan|3news.com|Ghana