Young men and young women encounter challenges every day. In addition to the “ordinary” challenges in their communities, like struggles over limited resources including water, housing or jobs, girls and boys face discrimination due to their race and gender. This includes physical and sexual violence, being kept out of school, greater vulnerability to HIV infection and lack of access to property and other rights.

According to the United Nation Children’s Fund, “While it is estimated that women perform two-thirds of the world’s work, they only earn one tenth of the income, and own less than one percent of the world’s property.” In addition, young women make up 62% of people between the ages of 15 and 24 living with HIV worldwide. In the sub-Saharan Africa, that figure soars to an alarming 76%.

It is right to be shocked and frightened by these statistics. However, we also know that girls and young women around the world have the collective power to change their lives, their communities and the world we live in. Just as they face daily challenges, girls and young women are continually coming up with creative and effective ways to improve their lives. Boys are also contributors to these statistics and this information is relevant to all.


Understanding this need for learning opportunities, LifeLine Johannesburg, with support from the Ford Foundation, has developed the “Girls and Boys on the Move” programme for the 12-18 year olds in schools within Alexandra and broader Soweto.

The objective of this programme is to provide young girls and boys within Alexandra and Soweto with information about gender, sexuality and HIV/AIDS, and access to services and resources that will help them to make healthy choices.

The programme includes:

 A 12-week school based training programme (during school hours), which looks at gender awareness and rights, sexuality and HIV education. This includes:

– Increasing knowledge and understanding;

– Explaining and clarifying feelings, values and attitudes;

– Developing and/or strengthening interpersonal and decision-making skills; and

– Encouraging behaviour that reduces risks.

The modules are as follows: Module 1: Why Am I Here?

To understand the purpose of the programme

To talk about my expectations and any fears I might have about the programme

To fill out the baseline assessment questionnaire

To participate in setting the ground rules for our sessions (to establish trust)

Module 2: Beliefs and Values

 To look at my beliefs and values about gender, sexuality, and sexual health

To understand what values are and where they come from

To understand how beliefs and values impact on behaviour

Module 3: Gender, Sex and Sexuality

To understand the concepts of gender, sex and sexuality and how they relate to each other

To understand how gender roles can cause harm

Module 4: Adolescence and Puberty

To understand what adolescence is

To understand the physical and emotional changes that happen during adolescence

To understand that sexual feelings are normal

Module 5: Male and Female Reproductive Systems

To understand the main organs in the male and female reproductive systems

 To understand the steps to pregnancy

To explore myths related to sex and pregnancy

Module 6: Making an Egg Baby

 To begin the journey of understanding what it means to be a parent

Module 7: Parenthood (Reflecting on the Egg Baby)

To reflect on the responsibilities associated with being a parent

 To understand the ways in which parenthood can affect a person’s life

 To understand the reasons to delay pregnancy and parenthood

To understand what options are available when facing an unwanted pregnancy

Module 8: HIV and AIDS and Other Common STIs

To understand what HIV and AIDS are

 To understand how HIV is transmitted

 To understand how the transmission of HIV can be prevented

To understand what the other most common sexually transmitted infections (STIs) are

To understand the typical signs and symptoms of STIs

Module 9: Mother-to-Child-Transmission

To understand what mother-to-child-transmission is

To understand how to reduce the risk of mother-to-child-transmission during pregnancy, childbirth and breastfeeding

Module 10: Contraception and STI Prevention

 To understand what contraception is

 To understand the common methods of contraception and STI prevention

To understand how to use a condom correctly

Module 11:

Sexual Decision Making

To understand that everyone has the right to say “no” to having sex

To understand the reasons for saying “no” to sex and the reasons for saying “yes” to sex

To understand that saying “no” to sex is the only certain way to prevent HIV transmission and unwanted pregnancy

Module 12: Now What? – Realising My Power

To reflect on my power to make healthy life choices

To fill out the post assessment questionnaire

Follow-up information and support through regular cell phone messaging to the girl learners and access to the LifeLine 24-hour telephone service, face to face counselling services and centres in Johannesburg, Soweto and Alexandra.

 Opportunities for the girls and boys and their parents/guardians/caregivers to talk about gender, sexuality and HIV/AIDS, so that these relationships can be strengthened and guardians can support their children as they grow. (This part of the programme will come after the school-based training programme.) We call this phase, dialogues.

 Spreading positive messages using FaceBook and other popular media channels.

Download this Document