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Church addresses teenage pregnancy

Siteri Sauvakacolo
Sunday, May 25, 2014

THE Methodist Church in Fiji and Rotuma is working to address the issue of teenage pregnancy in the country.

Church communications secretary Reverend James Bhagwan said last year's statistic of 1624 cases was alarming.

Mr Bhagwan said anytime the church heard teenage pregnancy, they automatically thought of two areas.

"The first is the fact that we have an increasing number of young mothers who as a result won't be able to finish their education," Mr Bhagwan said in an interview last night.

"Also the impact it will have on them and their families, the challenge itself — how we will provide care and support for these young mothers."

He said it was important that the church ensured they were able to support their young mothers in any way possible.

"We have to ensure they are supported and the children are taken care of.

"This is why we have places like Dilkusha Home.

"On the other hand the statistics are alarming and so we need to look at our strategy and encourage our young men and women because it takes two parties to make a baby.

"We need to encourage young people to sponsor good choices, to value their bodies and to respect the Christian values of sex after marriage and value the body as a gift from God — it is one of the things we are looking at as the church's connexional plan," Mr Bhagwan said.

"We are working towards addressing the issue."

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