Young Voices Africa | Resources on Sex & Relationships

Young Voices Africa is an initiative of AVERT. They have made several videos focussed on six characters – Spijo, Lineo, Martha, Babalwa, Chipo and Mwaise who are all facing dilemmas around sex and relationships. Covering dating older people, an unhealthy relationship, having sex without a condom, being able to say no to sex, contraception options, or disclosing an HIV status – these are big decisions. Through the characters’ stories there is key information and messages about each topic,  their situations, and suggestions for how to create a comic where the viewer decides how their stories end.

The material includes ‘Fast Fact Sheets’ and sample questions for discussion. Here is our adapted 10 messages from a fast fact sheet addressing ‘options for contraception’.

The good news is that there are lots of different ways that you can prevent pregnancy these days. However, that does mean that deciding what contraception to use has become a bit confusing.

  1. Remember that to get pregnant a sperm (from a man) must fertilise an egg (in a woman).
  2. If you’re having sex with someone of the opposite sex, and you don’t want to get pregnant, it’s important that you use contraception.
  3. Contraception is both partners’ concern, so it’s a good idea to talk about your options together before having sex.
  4. When deciding what contraception to use, think about: whether you want to protect against sexually transmitted infections (STIs) as well as pregnancy; how long-lasting you want it to be; and whether you think you will be able to remember to take your contraception.
  5. Condoms are effective. They provide a physical barrier between the man’s semen and the woman’s womb. They are the only method of contraception that prevents both pregnancy and STIs including HIV.
  6. The contraceptive pill is an effective form of contraception, taken by women. The pills contain hormones which prevent pregnancy by stopping ovulation (the release of an egg).
  7. Contraceptive pills don’t offer protection from STIs.
  8. An implant is a small tube (about four millimetres long) that is inserted just under the skin on a woman’s arm.  It releases hormones that stop ovulation and prevent pregnancy. It can last up to four years, but doesn’t protect against STIs.
  9. Injections are like the pill and the implant – they stop ovulation through the use of hormones, preventing pregnancy. They don’t protect against STIs.
  10. Not all of these options are available everywhere, so talk to a health worker you trust about the options where you are.

Here are some other good sources of information: