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Philippine youth body wants church to fight teen pregnancy

Rising cases 'most serious challenge' young Filipinos face

Philippine youth body wants church to fight teen pregnancy

Incidents of teenage pregnancies are higher in urban poor communities in the Philippines. (Photo by Angie de Silva)


July 17, 2017

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The Philippines' National Youth Commission called on church leaders to play an active role in the government's campaign against teenage pregnancy.

Marilou Chua, head of social marketing of the commission, said teenage pregnancy has become the "most serious challenge" being faced by young Filipinos.

One factor that contributes to the growing problem is the failure of adults to guide the youth, said Chua.

"[Teenagers] often go to their fellow youth to seek advice. Most times, these young people are being led in the wrong direction," she said.

James de Vera, executive director of the Ten Accomplished Youth Organization Awards Foundation, said youth formation programs of the church continues to be "relevant."

He said the church is "one sector that can best influence our youth nowadays," adding that many recipients of his group's awards are school-based Catholic groups.

Teen pregnancy among young people in the Philippines aged 15 to 19 years old are on the upswing with a record 209,872 cases in 2014.

In 2011, there were 203,653 reported cases, equivalent to an increase of 6,219 in only three years.

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