An assessment of school girls’ attitude towards risky sexual behaviours in Ilala municipality, Dar es Salaam

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University of Dar es Salaam
This study examined adolescent school girls’ attitudes towards risky sexual behaviours, awareness and knowledge on risky sexual behaviours and the contribution of social environments in influencing adolescent school girls’ knowledge, attitude and intention towards risky sexual behaviours in Ilala Municipality, Dar es Salaam. The study followed Reasoned Action theory (Ajzen and Fishbein 1970’s). The study employed a mixed methods research approach with cross-sectional survey designs. The study included 122 primary and secondary school girls aged 12 to 17 years old, 12 parents and 8 teachers. Data were collected through a questionnaire and FGD’s for students and in-depth interviews for parents and teachers. Quantitative data were analysed in terms of frequencies, percentages, means and standard deviations. Independent sample t-testing was used to compare young and older adolescents’ attitudes, knowledge, perceived social influence and intention. The Pearson correlation coefficient was used to show the relationship between perceived social influence and adolescent girls’ sexual intention with the purpose of identifying the significance of the relationship between the two variables Qualitative data were transcribed; coded and common themes were identified and used during the discussion. The findings reveal that primary and secondary school girls are positively oriented towards risky sexual behaviours like having sexual partners, having penetrative sexual intercourse and deep kissing. Girls know the importance of using contraceptives and avoiding risky sexual environments. They appeared to be less aware in avoiding pregnancies and sexual desires. The t-tests revealed no significant difference between the early and late adolescents sexual attitude (M=4.06, SD=0.39) and (M=3.95, SD=0.51), t (120) = 0.194, p=0.846. The Pearson correlation indicated that adolescent girls’ sexual intentions were weakly correlated to the social influence. Social factors had insignificant influence on the adolescent girls’ knowledge, attitude and intention in Ilala Municipality. The study concluded that adolescent school girls are at high risk of engaging in risky sexual behaviours such as planning and intending to change sexual partners, carrying condoms, searching for sexual partners and even planning to have sexual intercourse. The study recommended that specific educational programs should be established among close relatives of adolescent girls including parents and society at large. Similarly, there is a need for revising the policy and guidelines regarding sexuality education in both secondary and primary schools in Tanzania.
Available in print form, East Africana Collection, Dr. Wilbert Chagula Library, Class mark (THS EAF HQ27.5.T34M734)
Sexual ethics, School girls, Ilala municipality, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
Msingi, M. (2017) An assessment of school girls’ attitude towards risky sexual behaviours in Ilala municipality, Dar es Salaam. Master dissertation, University of Dar es Salaam. Dar es Salaam.