Adolescent pregnancy has affected the lives of young girls in developed and developing nations. It is estimated that 21 million girls aged between 15 to 19 years become pregnant in developing countries and about 12 million of them give forth to the young ones. Early and accidental pregnancies among young girls are linked to several adverse social , economic, educational and health outcomes.
Society has continued to bury heads in the sand believing teenagers are not having sex with sex education remaining a contentious topic on whether it should be introduced in the curriculum. Parents widely believe that teenagers should not have sex and girls they should not get pregnant. Society forgets that puberty is a stormy period for both genders and teenagers need an understanding and guidance for them to go through this period rather than the usual statements.
Adolescent pregnancy challenges cannot be fixed by one person neither does it have a known solution. It is an adaptive challenge and as such different groups will have different perceptions of the problem and the path to follow to have positive results. Conflict will arise and as a person leading an adaptive change you should provide a conducive environment so that ideas and different views and perspectives can be provided. This is useful to get others on board. The seven steps should be put into practice as follows:
Prepare by doing your preliminary work. Understand different groups, engage with them prior to the meeting to preempt some items and get their views on tough topics. Different groups may include: parents, youths, church leaders, teachers union among other stakeholders. Ground rules for the discussion should be clear and be influenced by teenage pregnancies as the problem. The set environment should be in a way that stakeholders are free to share their views without infringement. In orchestrating conflict, you need to know when to regulate the temperature of the discussion. This will ensure no concept or idea slides out of the table. Identify losses and fears and how they can be managed. What will the church as an institution fear, what are the losses for the youths? Use different models that may influence consensus and commitments from different members and give room for consulting. Thank you for watching.