Monday, April 29, 2013

RUNS: VIRTUE OR VICE? Guest Blog By Dami Adeoye

The recent report by BBC news that there is high rate of teenage girls living with HIV in South Africa; allegedly caused by sugar daddies and the unprecedented trafficking of teenage girls as sex slaves make many shudder and wonder about the future of the African child.

Runs is a slang coined for every behavior devoid of integrity. For example, a young girl who sleeps with rich men known as sugar daddies for money is said to be involved in "runs."

It is indeed worrisome that children barely out of their cradle are already involved with men old enough to be their fathers to the extent of contracting HIV and its attendant diseases. Also of concern is the indiscreet way young girls are lured abroad by human traffickers to become sex slaves. These are kids of school-age whom lullaby should still be sung to. In this case, young girls in villages are the major victims of human traffickers who promise their illiterate parents overseas scholarships and job opportunities for them. In a bid to alleviate poverty, their poor parents out of ignorance consent to the whims of the traffickers who turn their children to prostitutes abroad.

From reports, "Runs" is more prevalent among female students of higher schools of learning. This is one of the reasons parents are sceptical of leaving their female children to attend tertiary institutions.

Some girls engage in it for different reasons. It may be due to poverty, greed, curiosity and peer influence.

Poverty has been cited as one of the reasons teenage girls are involved in the act of sleeping with sugar daddies for money. The poor economic conditions which pervade in most countries in Africa prevent parents from providing adequately for their children. This leads the children into finding alternatives to support themselves. As a result, they fall prey into the hands of randy men.

Also, some female students who are orphans or from poor homes, who nurture academic ambitions are liable to get involved because they do not have any means of livelihood. They believe they must be educated either by hook or crook as education is their only way out of poverty.

Curiosity plays a role in girls' involvement in the act. This stems from what they view as unreasonable restrictions by strict parents. It is a way of expressing their freedom and independence. Thus, they rebel against their parents' wish.

Greed which has been defined as excessive desire for wealth is also considered reason young girls get involved in Runs.

In truth, some of these girls are well catered for by their parents, but out of their insatiable appetite for materialism and extravagance still sleep around for money. This kind of situation whereby a girl from a privileged home still gets involved in "Runs" has been likened to a case of one casting one's pearl before swine.

From inquiries, peer influence has been identified as part of reasons teenage girls become victims of promiscuous men. It is a natural feeling for young girls to want to fit in, so that they would be accepted by others, gain peer approval, for popularity and to prevent being stigmatized a social outcast. As a result, vulnerable girls who do not have the courage to stand against peer pressure fall victim of their peers who introduce them to various acts of immorality. They acquiesce to it, and in the process, some have contracted Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) and become drug addicts.

Many people have posed questions of who should be blamed for these unfortunate realities of our time. African leaders for poor economic situations? The ineptitude of parents and inability to provide adequately for their child? The child who does not have the courage to stand up for moral convictions?

African leaders and agencies in charge must intensify their efforts to save the future glories of Africa from destruction.

Also, African core values and ethics must be upheld to prevent further moral decadence.

About Guest Blogger: Dami Adeoye
I love to read, write and travel. I believe strongly that emphasis should be more on causatives-of problems, not just treating issues on the surface but from root. This belief inspired the article. HIV can be curbed if youths shun materialism and extravagance, which are the bane of the society today.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Pink Pearl Foundation Takes Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening to Cameroon

As part of an effort to enlighten and empower Cameroonian women at the grassroots, Dr. Lydia Fondufe recently invited Pink Pearl Foundation (PPF) to provide free lecture and screening on breast and cervical cancer.

The event, which took place in March 2013 at the ministry of health in Kumbo, Cameroon, had in attendance the PPF team from Nigeria headed by its founder, Mrs Orode Ryan-Okpu and senior partner, Mr. Onye Ubanatu. Medical partners from Diamond Helix Hospital; Dr. Ufuoma Okotete and Dr. Vivian Mbaba were also in attendance.

The event  which also marked National Women's Day in Cameroon,  kicked off with lectures from Dr. Oketete on the importance of early detection of symptoms (breast and cervical cancer). "Those already with the disease shouldn't be stigmatized, rather they should be cared for and loved, all they need is hope," Mrs Ryan-Okpu added during her presentation.

At the training, the women were taken through a session on Breast Self-Examination (BSE) with emphasis on the need for regular mammography tests and checkups.

A free breast and cervical cancer screening later followed after the session. Of the 175 women screened, 16 were found to have lumps/mass tissues in their breast while 67 were diagnosed with cervicitis, discolorations or discharges.

Mr. Onye Ubanatu, while giving  closing remark, urged the women to share their knowledge with other women who were not able to attend the event.

Since its launch in 2007, Pink Pearl Foundation has shown dedication towards eradicating Breast and Cervical Cancer in Nigeria through its awareness creation programs. The organisation has so far implemented over 40 of such programs to support the cause.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Watch the Live Stream of Africa Movie Academy Awards

Africa Movie Academy Awards (AMAA) is scheduled to hold in Bayelsa state on April 20th, 2013.

And yes! It'll be streaming live! Don't miss any of the actions! ;-) Click the link to watch and be part of the event:

Help spread the word!

Enjoy your weekend.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Video Interview: On technology and health #mhealth #IRP13

“Technology is changing a whole lot of things…the way we see our health should also change.” Dr. Nkiruka Orajiaka, Product Advisor, Hugh Alies.

This story was made possible by a grant from the International Reporting Project (IRP) for New Media Fellows.

First published on Ventures Africa. Also appeared on IRP website and Broad Street NG.

Tuesday, April 02, 2013

Positive Disruption

Don't miss this!!

TEDxChange 2013: Positive Disruption
9:00 – 10:30 am PDT / 5:00 – 6:30 pm GMT

Join us for a global webcast of TEDxChange 2013: Positive Disruption,
convened by Melinda Gates.

More details:

Watch live at:<>