This was a statement made by adolescent boys and girls of Katarara secondary school during the outreach campaign on “ending sexual violence against girls and the role of men and boys in eradicating early pregnancies” organized by Boys/girls4Change club on 8th February 2019. The objective of this campaign was to sensitize and mobilize students and the local population to fight against sexual and gender-based violence, including the rising issue of teenage pregnancies.
During this campaign, the club members of Katarara secondary school- located in Juru sector, Bugesera District- played out dramas, poems and songs on sexual violence perpetrated against young girls by men and boys and on the role of the latter to eradicate teenage pregnancies. The club members strongly advocated for the need for men and boys to be part of the solution, since they are behind the problem at hand.
"The main cause of teenage pregnancies is not only poverty in the family, as many might think, but also the negative masculine behavior that lead to sexual violence against girls" stated the Boys/girls4Change club members in the drama piece "Itonde no hanze aha" (translation: “be careful out there”). The carelessness of parents was also pointed at in the various dramas, poems and songs presented by the students. Boys and girls committed to partner to end early pregnancies and other forms of violence as well as promote healthy adolescent relationships.
In his remarks, the Sector Social Affairs Officer, Mr. Habiyaremye Desire, who represented the Executive Secretary of Juru Sector, thanked RWAMREC for its efforts to contribute to fighting Gender Based Violence in general, and early pregnancies in particular; by actively seeking men’s engagement in this journey of transformation. He indicated that more than 68 cases have been so far registered in the sector. Mr. Habiyaremye added that the Juru sector strongly supports the initiatives of Boys/girls4change club to eradicate the issue of teenage pregnancies in schools and in surrounding communities.
The outreach campaign at the school of Katarara was organized in the framework of a six months project entitled" Engaging boys as positive supporters of girls in the fight against early pregnancies in schools and surrounding communities", supported by the Canada Fund for Local Initiatives (CFLI). This project operates in 2 secondary schools, GS Katarara and GS Rilima Catholique, respectively located in Juru and Rilima sectors, Bugesera District.