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Type Journal Article - Global Journal of Human-Social Science Research
Title Peer Education and Behaviour Change on Hiv/Aids Prevention in Secondary Schools in Rachuonyo District, Kenya: Prospects and Policy.
Volume 14
Issue 4
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2014
Page numbers 5-12
URL http://socialscienceresearch.org/index.php/GJHSS/article/view/1164
By the end of 2012, about 1.2 million Kenyans were
living with the HIV virus; which is expected to reach 1.8 million
by 2015, mainly due to new infections. The age bracket 15-24
years provided opportunity for interventions such as peer
education to prevent new infections and save future
generations from the scourge. The aim of this study was to
determine the difference between peer education club
members (beneficiaries) and non-members (non-beneficiaries)
in terms of behaviour change indicators, including abstinence,
faithfulness to a partner, condom use and HIV testing. The
study covered eight public secondary schools in Rachuonyo
County, where peer education clubs had been operational for
two years. The static group comparison design was applied to
guide the research process, and primary data sourced from
260 beneficiaries and 212 non-beneficiaries. Club membership
and class registers were used to develop sampling frames for
beneficiaries and non-beneficiaries, respectively. Systematic
random sampling procedure was applied to select participants
and Fisher’s formula used to determine sample sizes.
Quantitative analysis techniques included cross-tabulations
with Chi square statistic, beta co-efficients (β), and odds ratios
[Exp (β)]. The study found that 27 (10.4%) beneficiaries and 8
(3.8%) non-beneficiaries were not sexually active, hence, were
likely to be practicing abstinence. Controlling for gender, age,
religion, orphan hood status and schooling consistency, the
odds ratios indicated that beneficiaries had about 2.6 times
the odds of practicing abstinence as non-beneficiaries (β =
0.946, SE = 0.189, CI = 1.78-3.73); beneficiaries were about
3.3 times as likely to practice faithfulness to an uninfected
partner as non-beneficiaries (β = 1.197, SE = 0.272, CI =
1.94-5.64). Furthermore, beneficiaries had about 2.6 times the
odds of using condoms consistently as non-beneficiaries (β =
0.969, SE = 0.186, CI = 1.83-3.78); and regarding HIV testing,
beneficiaries had 2.1 times the odds of taking HIV test as nonbeneficiaries
(β = 0.764, SE = 0.181, CI = 1.506-3.061). In
conclusion, the peer education project had contributed
significantly to behaviour change among the secondary school

youths. However, without appropriate sustainability measures,
such gains may be lost easily because behaviour change has
a lot to do with change in the mind-set, something that may
not be achieved through a project of two years. The study
recommends that peer education be integrated in school
extra-curricular activities. This will require the Ministry of
Education and Ministry of Health to spearhead the formulation
of appropriate policy guidelines and curricula, encourage
professional development of teachers in peer education; and
extend peer education sensitization to the community level to
enable parents play a more active guidance role to sustain
and scale-up the gains made through the project.

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