THE ROLE OF TELEMEDICINE IN RESOURCE-POOR ENVIRONMENTS TO ENHANCE REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH
, N. Kariyawasam2
, J. Wanjira3
1Stockholm University (SWEDEN)
2e-Learning centre, University of Colombo School of Computing (SRI LANKA)
3Salvage a Girl Initiative (KENYA)
The Kenyan Government is increasing its efforts in order to decrease the disparities between urban and rural environments. A concrete vision is Vision 2030 meaning to create an equal, middle-income Kenya by year 2030 (Kenya ICT Board 2010), The Digital Villages Project is a concrete visualisation of this vision. A digital village is a kind of telecentre or community learning centre, which is said to be fruitful in clearing the disparities between those who have an education and those who have not.
In Kenya, attention needs to be paid upon educating adolescents on sexual risk behaviour in order for such a society to take shape, which will be highlighted in this article.
This study was set out trice. (1) Firstly during a conference in 2009 entitled “Africa-Europe Cooperation in Science and Technology: Status and Way Forward”, supported under European Commission at Sarova Whitesands, Mombasa. This hotel shares beaches with many other hotels, which is an aspect important to keep in mind for purposes of this study. (2) Secondly as a sequel to another study that strived to categorise experiences of barriers to learning and communication in everyday lives. In this study was found that a critical barrier to learning and communication was prostitution. (3) We conducted empirically studies on the usage of telecentres as community learning centres to telemedicine deleverage.
Threats to adolescent development
Many people change behaviour and pay for sexual favours when going abroad (Hesse & Tutenges 2011) even though locals themselves are the major consumers (UNESCO 2011). This behaviour, as a part of prostitution – no matter the consumer is a tourist or a local – increases the risk of sexual transmitted diseases (STDs) (Goldenberg 2011).
Prostitution, its causes, and aftermaths have always affected and been threats to adolescent development, which has been uncovered by UNICEF several times. For instance, UNICEF (2007:4-5; 2011:18;32) in its The State of the World's Children report recognises the following:
• “Among the greatest threats to adolescent development are abuse, exploitation and violence, and the lack of vital knowledge about sexual and reproductive health, including HIV/AIDS”
• “An estimated 1.8 million children are involved in commercial sex work. Many are forced into it.”
• Health information on adolescents is not widely available in many developing countries apart from indicators on sexual and reproductive health, particularly in the context of HIV and AIDS.
• Poverty, social and economic exclusion, low educational level and lack of information about the risks attached to commercial sexual exploitation, increase adolescents’ vulnerability to sexual abuse. The driving factor behind commercial sexual exploitation of children, however, is demand.
Purpose of the study
All these threats and factors mentioned so far were strong motivations for us to delve into the issue of sexual behaviour and adolescent development, using the surroundings of Lunga-Lunga, Kwale district as a case. The purpose of the study is to contribute to health, quality of life, and lifelong learning by addressing strategies for the dissemination of information into resource-poor environments that enables adolescents and parents to understand how safe sexual behaviour can take place.