This guidance note describes the dominant adolescent rites of passage and initiation ceremonies in four countries in the Southern African region (Malawi, Eswatini, South Africa and Zambia). UNFPA-ESARO chose to focus on these four countries because they are implementing countries of the Safeguard Young People Programme (SYP). SYP was developed in 2013 to scale up comprehensive interventions in ESA for young people ages 10 to 24 to protect themselves from STIs (including HIV), early and unintended pregnancy, unsafe abortion, early marriage, gender-based violence and harmful cultural practices, while promoting gender-equitable norms. UNFPA-ESARO’s goal in this guidance document is to raise additional awareness about those practices that are limiting young people’s potential and, in some cases, harming them physically, socially and emotionally.
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