Teen pregnancy is a burning public health and demographic challenge in Ethiopia. Although the legal age of marriage in Ethiopia stands at 18 years old, over 14% of girls are married by age 15, and over 40% by age 18. By far, 83% of all teen pregnancies occur within a marriage. Large variations exist between regions, income groups, and educational levels. Child marriage and teenage pregnancy have strong effects on the possibilities of Ethiopian girls to escape poverty. Access the Ethiopia fact sheet here.
Also availabe for Ethiopia, view Dagmawi Tadesse's three-minute video on teen pregancy in the country.
Adolescent pregnancy and childbearing are common in Kenya. Almost a quarter of Kenyan women give birth by the age of 18, and nearly half by the age of 20. To realise the SDGs in Kenya, it is important to reduce the number of teen pregnancies in the country. When adolescent girls grow up healthy, and are able to go to school, they are more likely to escape poverty, and they facilitate the upward social and economic mobility of their families and society. Access the Kenya fact sheet here.
Also available for Kenya, view spoken word video performance by Poet Mamboleo, titled "This is her story". "This is her story" narrates the trials and tribulations faced by girls like Naomi, stripped off the dignity to walk through life and engage in society due to unintended teen pregnancy. Poet Mamboleo's performance ends with a call to action to keep pregnant teens and teen mothers in school.
The Netherlands has been showing a consistent trend in reducing teen pregnancies to rates that are among the lowest in the world. When a girl decides to keep her pregnancy, there are institutions that make sure that she can remain in school or at work; that offer her financial and social support; and that provide her with other means of assistance, such as decent housing (www.siriz.nl). Despite these positive statistics, challenges do persist. Access The Netherlands fact sheet here.
Approximately 37% of adolescents at Sint Maarten are sexually active, and run the risk of getting pregnant (Pan American Health Organization, 2013). Research in 2013 shows that although the majority of adolescents uses condoms and/or another type of contraceptive, one in ten had either become pregnant, or had gotten someone pregnant during their teen years. The risk of teen pregnancy is highly correlated with other challenges, for example, low connection to institutions such as schools, and lack of family support. Access the Sint Maarten fact sheet here.