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Undercovered: Using Texts to Spread Awareness About Sexual Health in Mozambique

8679795523_6eb4f3a9af_kUndercovered is our daily feature bringing attention to women’s issues worldwide, which we feel deserve a larger audience.

Women & Girls Hub reported Monday on the efforts of the Coalizao youth center in Mozambique’s capital city Maputo, which is using text messaging to spread awareness and education about sexual health.

As misinformation about condoms and healthy sexual practices proliferates in Mozambique, so does HIV transmission. UNICEF says that women and girls are three times more likely to test positive for the virus.

Hannah McNeish, reporting from Mozambique, writes:

UNICEF launched its SMS BIZ text message service in October in four provinces, including Maputo, where almost 20 percent of the adult population has HIV/AIDS. The service currently has around 36,000 subscribers aged between 10 and 24 years, and UNICEF hopes to reach 50,000 subscribers by the end of 2016.

The results of Coalizao’s pre-launch surveys showed a real need for accurate information about avoiding and coping with HIV. Even in the capital, rumors about the virus still swirl around the streets.

You can read the complete report here.

[photograph: Novartis AG, via Flickr. CC BY-NC-ND 2.0]

Undercovered is a daily feature from Mediaite, bringing attention to stories about women’s issues that warrant more attention. Go through the Undercovered archives here. If you have an idea or a tip, please email us at Undercovered@mediaite.com

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