First I would like to thank the Almighty God for giving me the guidance, health and strength in completing this project and making it a success.
Secondly, I would like to show gratitude to my Social Studies teach, Mr. Burke, for giving me the opportunity and having patience with me to do this project.
Thirdly, I would like to thank my Aunty and Uncle, Mr & Mrs. Campbell for helping and letting me use their computer to type this project.
I would also like to show appreciation to others who assisted in this Social Studies SBA.
Teenage pregnancy is a social problem that is not fixed by sexual education or abstinence but an overall buildup of a person to lead a healthy life with a healthy self esteem to make good choices in life.
Teenage motherhood is a large issue in society. Circumstances contributing to the increase in teenage pregnancy will be examined along with ways that teenage pregnancy can be reduced. Several current programs and methods to reduce teenage motherhood will be discussed for their effectiveness, as well as the current public policy. Various ways to increase their effectiveness will also be discussed with possible recommendations. With a belief that programs that contain abstinence will have the greatest effect on a person’s behavior.
There are many social and economic causes of teenage pregnancy. The most primary cause is the lack of knowledge among teenagers regarding the consequences of irresponsible sexual behavior. Most cases of teenage pregnancies are observed in the lower economic strata of society where there is a lack of knowledge, awareness and facility to address the problem of unintended pregnancy. Lack of trust and communication between parents and kids is another important cause of unwanted teen pregnancy. Parental attitude towards their teenaged children and amongst themselves influence their children’s behavior and thoughts. If parents are unable to communicate with their children regarding issues relating to sex then the kids resort to acquiring information regarding sex through other sources which may not be reliable. These other sources are generally magazines and friends who are extremely unreliable sources of information and can mislead the children into forming incorrect ideas about sex.
Lack of emotional maturity and independence to act and behave responsibly is another outcome of poor communication and relationship between parents and teenagers. Many teenagers indulge in irresponsible sexual behavior due to lack of information and awareness regarding sex. Other reasons are peer pressure inability to express views and frustration in the child as a result of no extra curricular activities. Inadequate knowledge or awareness regarding reproductive health, contraceptives and consequences of unintended pregnancy are most often the causes of teenage pregnancy. Reasons for teenage pregnancy are not as simple as prosecuting “predatory “men who have sex with underage females.
Teen girls have been shown to have babies for many different reasons. Reasons range from the belief that having a baby will give them something to love, forgetting to use contraceptives, they not know how to use contraceptives, and they only did it once, rape, to get closer to their parents or a boyfriend, or status in social economic area. The effects of teenage pregnancy are many and varied from the obvious to the not so obvious. The importance of this topic is reflected by the fact that 70% of the current occupants of our juvenile already have a parent in the prison system, 93% of them male. Teenage girls who become mothers before they are 18 have less lifetime earning power than mothers who wait until 18-25 and even less than those mothers who wait until over 25 to have their first child. Mothers under the age of 18 are more likely to live in poverty, and not live independently.
What can be used to stop teenage pregnancy? Several current programs and methods are out there right now in our society. We have sex education, contraceptives, abortion, abstinence, school based health clinics, pregnancy counseling, mentoring, and church based programs and intervention by the government. Possible suggestions and programs that have been tried out in the field will be examined for their effectiveness. Abstinence, sexual education, reward based programming, effects of parental programming, and church attendance will all be examined for their effectiveness. Possible improvements to these existing methods and programs, as well as the government policy will also be examined.
STATEMENT OF PROBLEM
Problem in the form of question asked:
“Why are there so many teenage pregnancies in this community?”
REASONS FOR CHOOSING TOPIC
1. This topic was chosen because, it is very interesting and informative about our teenagers in the community and society relating to what they are involved in.
2. I think it was the best chosen topic among the sixteen (16) subtopics which I had to choose from to do my Social Studies SBA.
3. To help the researcher to find out more information about the teenagers in the society.
4. To help the researcher to be aware of what is happening to our/the teenagers in the society or community so that the researcher would not do or become involve in the same thing.
5. The researcher also choose this topic because there has been a rapid increase in teenage pregnancies in the community and would like to know what are the reasons and cause for it.
1. To find out the causes of teenage pregnancy
2. To find out the effects (disadvantages/advantages) of teenage pregnancy
3. To find out about teenage pregnancy preventions
4. To make recommendations
METHOD OF COLLECTING DATA
The researcher used questionnaire and observation in order to collect the data. The questionnaire was distributed to the individuals in my neighborhood, through a process of specific selection and the observation was done while reading through the questionnaire.
Sources like journals, magazines, statistics, books, reports are the secondary data collection which was used to provide data also, which was very helpful.
Nevertheless, the researcher used both secondary and primary for method of data collection. The primary method which is questionnaire and observation were very assist able in data collection. The questionnaire was used to provide excess amount of information and it was faster, cheap and efficient to be used among a large number of people. Observation was used among the individuals in the questionnaire and they responded adequately with my questions, they were very generous, well disciplined and helpful towards responding to my questions.
In conclusion of integrating both secondary and primary data collection methods they can be best for providing accurate data.
INSTRUMENTMENT USED TO COLLECT DATA
My name is Anna LaBorde, and I am a Fifth Form student of the Emmanuel High School, Mesopotamia. I am doing a Social Studies School Base Assessment, and researching on the topic “Teenage Pregnancy”. I am generously requesting your assistance in making my project a success, by filling out my questions with a good response (s) to the best of your ability.
15 – 19 27 – 34 20 -26 35 – 45
(1) Why do teenagers have sex? (2) What are the effects of teenage pregnancy? (3) Are there any good effects in teenage pregnancy? If YES give reasons.
(4) How can teenage pregnancy be prevented? Abstinence Diaphragm Condoms All of the Above (5) Is there a need or should Sex Education be taught in School? (6) Do you think that teenagers that have been pregnant should be given a second chance in school? If so give reasons why. (7) Are teenagers of poor or deprived circumstances more susceptible to becoming pregnant? If YES list reasons. If NO list reasons.
(8) Whose life is more affected as a result of teenage pregnancy? Parenting Style Friends Teenager None of the above If it is parenting style, give reasons for your answer.
(9) What are the possible consequences for the teenage boy and the teenage girl of an early pregnancy? Who pays the higher price, boy or girl? If boy give reasons for your answer If girl give reasons for your answer (10) Why do you think teenagers get pregnant? (11) Do you think teenage pregnancy is a problem? If so say why (12) If you were an adviser to your community on teenage pregnancy, what kind of programs would you recommend to decrease the number of teenage pregnancies? (13) Where do you think teenagers obtain sex education? The Media Reading Friends Adults outside of the Home
All of the Above (14) If you are/are not a parent, what advise or message would you give to a child about teenage pregnancy? (15) What are some recommendations that you would suggest to decrease the teenage pregnancy rate in the community and society in a whole?
PROCEDURES USED TO COLLECT DATA
The relevant information required to be analyzed were taken from the questionnaire which contained fifteen (15) questions.
These questions were answered by ten males and ten females which equalized to twenty (20) individuals who were being involved. All of the individuals are living in Evesham and the sample was chosen specifically. The questionnaire was distributed to the individuals on Monday 14 February 2005 at 6:00 p.m., when the individuals are most likely to be at home.
These individuals had four (4) weeks in order to complete the questionnaire. They all were aged between 15-45 years. The questionnaire was then received and completed to the researcher on Monday, 7 March 2005.
1) Some of the questionnaires were not returned on time, which delayed in completion of the project.
2) Some of the respondents didn’t fully answer the question seven (7) completely with enough information which asked:
Question seven (7); Are teenagers of poor and deprived circumstances more susceptible to becoming pregnant? If yes list reason?
If no list reason?
3) As a result of some of the open hand question, the researcher found it very difficult to interpret findings as compared with the closed questions.
PRESENTATION OF DATA
Figure One (1)
A pie chart below showing the response to question three (3) which state, are there any advantages in teenage pregnancy?
Figure Two (2)
A vertical bar chart showing the responses to question four (4), which asked; How can teenage pregnancy be presented?
Figure Three (3)
A line graph showing the response to question five (5) which states; Is there a need or should sex education be taught in schools?
Figure Four (4)
This pie chart is showing the response to question six (6).
Figure Five (5)
This pie chart is showing the response to question seven (7) from the respondents.
Figure Six (6)
This histogram is showing the responses from the respondents towards question eight (8)
Figure Seven (7)
This pie chart is showing the response towards questions eleven (11) from the respondents.
Figure Eight (8)
This horizontal bar chart is showing the response according to question thirteen (13) from the respondents.
EXPLANATION OF DATA
In figure One (1), a pie chart was drawn showing the response to the question three (3) which was asked “Are there any advantages in teenage pregnancy?” Eleven persons responded “No” Two persons said “Yes”, four persons said not really and two persons said mostly.
In figure Two (2), a vertical bar chart which was drawn showing the responses to question four (4) which asked “How can teenage pregnancy be prevented?” There were four options to choose from, Eleven individuals said abstinence, six individuals said all of the above, two individuals said condoms and one individual said Diaphragm.
In figure three (3), a line graph was drawn showing the responses from the respondents to the question five (5) which asked “Is there a need or should sex education be taught in school? “Twelve persons said “Yes” three persons said definitely and two persons said “No”.
In question four (4), a pie chart was drawn showing the responses to question six (6) which asked “DO you think that teenagers that have pregnant should be given a second chance in school? If so give reasons why, thirteen individuals replied “”Yes” and two individuals replied “No”.
In figure five (5), a pie chart was drawn showing the responses to question to question seven which stated and asked “Are teenagers of poor and deprived circumstances more susceptible to becoming pregnant?” If “Yes list reasons “If no list reasons. Eight individuals replied “Yes”, five replied most definitely, four individuals replied “No” and four Individuals replied absolutely.
In figure six (6), a pie chart was drawn showing the response to question eight (8) which asked ‘’whose life is more affected as a result of teenage pregnancy?’’. Fifteen persons said the teenager, three persons said parenting style, two persons said friends and one person said all of the above.
In figure seven (7), a pie chart was drawn showing the response to question eleven (11) which asked ‘’Do you think teenage pregnancy is a problem?’ If so say why. Eighteen individuals said yes and two individuals replied no. In figure eight (8), a horizontal bar chart was drawn showing the responses to question thirteen (13) which asked ‘’where do you think teenagers obtain sex education? Two persons said adults outside the home, three persons said friends, three persons said reading, five persons said the media and ten persons said al of the above.
INTERPRETATION OF DATA
The questionnaire sample was made up of both females and males, between the ages of 15-45. The questionnaire was also made up of fifteen (15) questions.
In response to question one (1) which stated “Why do teenagers have sex?” The twenty (20) individuals expressed their opinions adequately. Four of them said to prove their love which was a total of 20%, five of them said because they are in love, so they have to do it which was a total of 30% and five of them also said to feel more grown up which was a total of 25%.
In response to question two (2) which states, “What are the disadvantages in teenage pregnancy? The individuals responses fully to this question. Some of their views were:
1. They (teenagers) have last an opportunity to abstain education and enjoy life at school with friends but instead of that, they have to play the role of a mother to take care of their daughter/ son, which is a loss in their lives and much more.
In response to question three (3), 57% believe that these isn’t any advantages in teenage pregnancy, 5% said “yes” 6% said most likely and 32% said not really they responded fully to this question also; the individuals which said that there isn’t any advantages in teenage pregnancy, they gave examples. They said “No because:
• Less education
• No/less self esteem because some of the teenagers would feel bad about themselves and what people may think of them of what they’re being involved in and much more.
The individuals that said “Yes they gave examples also;
• They said the teenagers would be able to gain more responsibility(ies)
• They wouldn’t be lazy which means they’ll have to work for their wants and need to satisfy them in any or every way. For question four (4). The individuals answered this question adequately. Because, the variety of those that chose abstinence said, that is the only way to go, to abstain and it will be prevented.
In relation to question five (5) there were agreements and disagreements among the individuals towards this question. Those that agreed said that it will make the youngsters to be aware of it so that they wouldn’t be involved and those that disagreed said that they will corrupt the youngster minds by urging them to go and do it, which will be a disadvantage in their lives.
For question (6) the individuals that agreed said, that the teenagers should be given a second chance so that they can strive and lean more about things to be more intelligent and educated. Those that disagreed said that, they don’t deserve a second chance because they’ve made a big mistake and further more they have a bigger responsibility, to play the role of the mother and to take care of a child.
For question seven (7), the individuals responded expressing towards this question. Those that disagreed said that poorer families may not be educated enough to provide adequate information on family planning and human sexuality; they also said that poorer families tend to be in environments where early pregnancy i.e. during teenage years is normal. Those that agree said that because of lack of money or love from parents/families, the teenagers will go out and do anything (like sex) to get what they want.
In question eight (8), the individual that chose parenting style said that, the teenage adopted everything from the mother like having a boyfriend and sex at an early age, and those that chose teenager said that, the teenager would be feeling bad, guilty and ashamed of what she has done, and she would be missing out a lot in her life like go to school having friends and enjoying herself but in stead of that she has to take on responsibilities for her and her child.
In question nine (9) the individuals give a lot of answers. They said for both of them, they’ll have to drop out or stop school to work for their wants and needs to support their child in every way and to be responsible. Those who chose and said the girl pays the higher price said that, the girl would find it more difficult because she has to carry the baby for nine (9) months to feel all the pain and she may not even know what to do because of her young teenage lifestyle. And for those who chose boy said that he will have to work hard with all his ability to support her and the baby.
For question ten (10) the individual give some good answers, some of them are, because of friends following bad company, because of living without a parent so they can do and go anywhere they want, lack of conduct and behavior and many more interesting responses.
In question eleven (11), there were agreements and disagreements again. Those that agreed said, it’s a big problem because it will look very bad towards the teenager, and the teenagers’ parents because, people would say that the mother is not showing any interest or and example to her child, to teach her right from wrong. And those who disagreed said that, the teenagers want to experience what it’s about.
For question twelve (12), the individual said that they display programs like, ways in which you can say no to sex, display the difficulties that would have to face if you’re pregnant etc. A variety of the individuals chose all of the above because all has an impact on teenagers in where they obtain sex education relating to question thirteen (13) but, the medical has the most impact out the five options upon the teenagers. Because, everything they tend to watch on television like adult movies, which they’re not suppose to, they imitative everything they see and pursue it, which may result in teenage pregnancy.
For question fourteen (14) the individuals gave good answers also live. What may result in having sex, don’t follow others who are doing it because you may end up feeling guilty, how to abstain and say no to sex etc. For question fifteen (15) some of the responses were, to have special programs, campaigns public speaking, debates among our teenagers of how they can say no or preventing sex and teenage pregnancies in the society and community.
The researcher found out that the effects of teenage pregnancy can be felt both socially and economically. Teenage pregnancy has an impact on the increase in the number of people involved in substance abuse, crimes and also in the number of people affected by many health problems like mental disorders and sexually transmitted diseases. The widespread of AIDS in today’s world is also one of the results of teen pregnancy. Teenaged mothers generally face social effects and drop out of school. The lack of social and family support makes them a part of the lower level in society where they cannot afford basic necessities like adequate nutrition and health care. Due to lack of support, awareness and means, these mothers are unable to take adequate care of themselves during pregnancy and they suffer from problems related to mental and physical health.
Effects of teenage pregnancy on society are easily observed as the level of education and growth is affected the productivity of the people is also affected. Governments have realized this problem and started many governmental support and welfare programs to create awareness on this issue. The researcher also found out that It is an obvious fact that Teenage pregnancy and society are linked to each other. Society plays a major role in the determining the increase or decrease in the percentage of teenage pregnancies. Studies have proved the existence of a link between social status and good physical and mental health. People in the lower status group are more prejudiced and have low self-esteem and generally some history of substance abuse like drugs or alcohol. They are also more likely to suffer from physical and mental disorders.
Teenagers belonging to the lower socio-economic strata are deprived of many basic health and educational facilities. This leads to lack of awareness and regarding sexual behavior knowledge amongst these teenagers. They are unaware of the consequences of sexual behavior and use of contraceptives. These teenagers also lack the motivation and self-confidence to take social and moral responsibility of their actions and therefore indulge in irresponsible sexual behavior.
Teenage pregnancy has always been looked down upon by society, yet this social problem by society is the most important cause of rise in teenage pregnancy. Sometimes social attitudes and peer pressure also lead to children indulging in irresponsible sexual behavior substance abuse and crimes. Unwed parents or single parents who are already suffering the consequences of their ignorance and irresponsible behavior raise children who in turn fall into the same trap as their parents.
This vicious circle is promoted due to lack of support from the family and society. In order to bring about significant improvement in the rate of teenage pregnancies the relation between teenage pregnancy and society needs to be given serious consideration.
Teenage pregnancy is a multi faceted problem that has many causes and factors that contributes to it. There is no real single solution that can put the genie of sex outside of marriage back in. The best programs that make a real dent in the problem of teen pregnancy use several things. Sexual education of what contraceptives are out there is a required part in all programs. A physical education lesson is required to contract all the myths out their regarding the human body. Part of the program needs to have abstinence in it to really be effective. If teens are concentrating on the issue of education for themselves at their formative years they will get better jobs and contribute more to society. They will also have more education themselves to deal with their own children. Also those who wait longer to have sex and to get married have a better base to build a better marriage. This enables them to raise children in a stable environment and bring them up as stable contributive members of society. It short saving us all money that we do not need to pay for welfare, prisons and social programs for teenage mothers.
The researcher recommends that:
• A first suggestion is for a program to start with a base of being factual about the human body. We need to recognize as a society that intercourse is more than just a physical interaction between two people. We need to put sex in a larger whole life view instead of just the view of sex education. Sex is a way of communicating. For some it is only a way of communicating to their selves but it should be a vehicle for communicating love between two people. In that world view sex is part of how we live not just something we do. This also means that we need to recognize that intercourse too early can hurt people psychologically. With 65% of teenage females saying that they had sex too early and 45% of males saying that they had sex too early. We need to look at the impact that physical intercourse has in comparison of intercourse as a union. We need to counsel teens to wait until they are more developed as a person overall to have intercourse.
• I believe abstinence works and is something that every sex education program should have in it. Do I believe that it should be the primary thing taught? Yes. Do I believe that no mention of contraceptives should be made? No. The hard facts are that teens are having sex too early, too often and with too many people. Love does not come into the picture when it should be part of the overall picture. Commitment should be part of the picture of sex education. Abstinence until marriage should be the goal of every young person who is even thinking about sex. In our current social structure that sounds very prudish I know. However all it takes to change ones view is to counsel a 13 year old girl who has lost her virginity and is now pregnant If that is not enough go to any inner city area and just look at the age of the mothers holding babies. Every one of those mothers has a real good chance of never making it out of the urban areas because she is a mother too early.
• The government should pursue in working collectively with the Family Planning Association unit about effective programmes, which would help to reduce some difficulties faced with teenage pregnancies and to educate them to abstain.
• In order to tackle the problem of unwed mothers or single parents, teenage pregnancy education needs to be promoted as extensively as possible. There are many aspects to be covered under Teenage pregnancy education. In order to be effective both the parents and their teenagers need to be targeted.
Parents need to set an example for their teenagers on being morally and socially responsible members of society. The value of sex education and communication needs to be impressed on all parents, so that the children can learn the basics of family life from their very own role models. Understanding, love and support from the parent reinforces the Childs confidence in him/her and helps him/her in making responsible sexual choices.
I suggest motivating the youngsters to make informed choices regarding sexual behavior and instilling in them a sense of responsibility and self worth is important for solving the problem of single parenthood. Also highlighting the health risks faced by young mothers and their babies, creates an awareness among the teenagers about the risks of early pregnancy and encourages them to postpone parenthood till they are emotionally and financially capable of handling the pressures of childrearing.
Talks and discussions by single parents regarding the problems of single parenting also helps in creating awareness among the teenagers. Considering the devastating psychological, physical and economical impact of teenage pregnancy on society it is important to have a well thought out teenage pregnancy education system.
Social Studies for the Caribbean CXC core units and option I.B Beddoe.
The English Dictionary.
The Webster’s Dictionary.
Nancy D Barnes; Susan E Harrod (USA) – “Teen pregnancy prevention: A rural model using school and community collaboration.” School Counselor, November 1993 Vol .41, Issue 2, p137.
Journal of Community Health, August 2000, Vol.25, Issue 4, p293 – “Abstinence Education for Urban Youth.” By Jessop, & Linda Carter, Lisa N Franklin (USA).