Family Environment and Sexual Risk Behavior among Young Women in Rakai, Uganda.

Esther Kaggwa, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health
Michael Koenig, Johns Hopkins University

Evidence of factors influencing adolescent's sexual risk behavior remains limited in settings characterized by high HIV/AIDS prevalence, despite their clear importance for HIV/STD policy and program formulation. The role of the family is particularly under explored. Data from a survey of 1884 15-24 year old women carried out in the Rakai surveillance programme was used to examine the effects of family and other factors upon adolescent sexual behavior-- early sexual debut, non-consensual first sex, and condom us at first sex. Our study found that living arrangement; female guardian’s alcohol consumption; and parent-child connectedness were associated with having early sex. Additionally, possession of more than a primary education by the mother, female guardian’s alcohol consumption and parent-child connectedness also influenced condom use. However, paternal characteristics and socio-economic status were generally not associated with a young person’s sexual experience. No clear pattern between most family factors and first coercive sex was found.

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Presented in Poster Session 4