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Masters Degrees (Health Promotion).

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    The parenting experience: an exploration study of coping mechanisms of young parents.
    (2022) Nombewu, Gladys Nompumelelo.; Hlengwa, Wellington Mthokozisi.
    This study aimed to understand experiences of young parents, and how they coped with parenting challenges in Quarry Heights. Furthermore, this study sought to determine coping techniques used in dealing with parental challenges. The study employed a qualitative approach, where a total of ten participants were interviewed, using an interview schedule. Thematic analysis was used to analyse the data collected and various themes emerged. The findings indicate that the transition to parenthood was an unplanned difficult event. Lack of knowledge and parenting skills, lack of financial resources and negative emotions emerged as main challenges. As a result, academic performance was disrupted, social networks were disconnected and parents felt socially isolated. The study found that, parents do not have sufficient coping resources to handle the transition. Coping strategies utilised were not effective in dealing with the challenges. However, social and financial support from family members made the transition process manageable. Therefore, research at government level is recommended to determine the feasibility of developing mentoring programs for teaching parenting and life skills. Furthermore, establishment of counselling centres in schools is recommended for psychological support. Based on the limitation of this study, it is recommended that a diverse sample with different race, gender and socio-economic status for diverse views be used for future research.
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    Factors influencing intention and uptake of COVID-19 vaccines on the African continent: a scoping review.
    (2022) Naidoo, Damian.; Meyer-Weitz, Anna.
    The COVID-19 pandemic is a severe concern worldwide, particularly in Africa. Vaccines are crucial in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. This scoping review examined existing literature on factors influencing intention and uptake of COVID-19 vaccines in Africa. Arksey and O'Malley's five-stage methodological paradigm was applied. A comprehensive search was undertaken from October 1st to 13th, 2021, using EBSCOhost, PubMed, Web of Science, and Google Scholar regarding the factors influencing intention and uptake of COVID-19 vaccines for studies conducted in Africa. A total of fifty published academic articles were reviewed, with many conducted in Nigeria and Ethiopia. The data analysis revealed five themes: attitudes & perceptions towards COVID-19 vaccines, intention to uptake COVID-19 vaccines, factors associated with acceptance/non-acceptance, socio-demographic determinants affecting the intention and uptake, and information sources for COVID-19 vaccines. The intention for uptake ranged between 21% and 90.1 %. Factors that promoted vaccine acceptance included confidence in the COVID-19 vaccine and the desire to protect vulnerable people. Age and sex were the most common factors significantly associated with vaccine acceptance. In contrast, most studies revealed that respondents' primary reasons for non-acceptance were safety and effectiveness concerns. The primary source of knowledge for the COVID-19 vaccines came from mass and social media. The vast majority of studies examined revealed that considerable barriers to vaccine uptake exist in Africa, contributing to the public's apprehension in this regard and resulting in a suboptimal uptake intention. To encourage vaccine uptake, governments should pay attention to refuting misinformation through integrated community-based approaches.
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    Understanding university students’ experiences of voluntary medical male circumcision: a qualitative inquiry.
    (2021) Mbambo, Siyabonga Arron.; Shumba, Kemist.
    Voluntary medical male circumcision remains the most crucial feature in the fight against new heterosexual HIV infections. Generally, men engage in sexual intercourse soon after undergoing VMMC. Therefore, research which focus on the factors influencing the men’s decision to undergo VMMC, their prevalent sexual experiences post VMMC, and meanings attached to VMMC after undergoing VMMC is important. The study used a qualitative research design and it is located within an interpretivist paradigm. In-depth individual interviews were conducted with UKZN Howard College students. A total of 10 students were purposively selected and participated in the in-depth interviews. Although ten interviews were pre-planned, data saturation was achieved from the eighth interview. Four participants were master’s students, three were honours students, and the rest were final year undergraduate students. All participants were Christians. The Health Belief Model was used as the conceptual framework and thematic analysis, as described by Braun and Clarke (2006), was used to analyse data. The in-depth individual interviews showed main motivations which resulted from the perceptions that influenced the men’s decision to undergo VMMC. VMMC main motivational factors included reducing chances of HIV infection, preventing STI infection, hygiene, peer pressure, enhancing sex, and abstaining from sex. Participants reported post-VMMC sexual experiences of big and clean penis, improved self-esteem, enhanced sexual functioning due to pleasurable sex, and removed sex pain. The new VMMC meanings post-VMMC procedure also elicited the need for dual protection and understanding of VMMC as painless procedure that means a personal responsibility. The findings from this study elicited that the participants experienced enhanced sexual functioning post-VMMC procedure. More research is needed to focus on the sexual experiences before and post-VMMC procedure in order to appropriately inform VMMC recruitment strategies.
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    The relationship between child rearing practices and adolescents’ attitudes toward sexual debut, Durban, South Africa.
    (2018) Luthuli, Samkelisiwe.; Hlengwa, Wellington Mthokozisi.
    About 30% of South African teenagers between the ages of 13-19 years have reported unplanned pregnancy in their lives. One of the determinants of the teenage pregnancy and HIV is early sexual debut. Adolescents who engage in sexual activities at an early stage become expose to more sexual partners and more unprotected sex which results in HIV, Sexual Transmitted Infections and unplanned pregnancy. Parents have a significant influence in shaping adolescents’ attitudes towards sexual behaviours through parenting practices such as communication, supervision and monitoring. The present study examined the relationship between child rearing practices and adolescents’ attitudes towards sexual debut. It further investigated whether (authoritative, authoritarian and permissive) parenting styles predicted initiation of sexual debut. The study used a cross-sectional survey design to gather the data. A sample of 150 learners was used. The measurements that were used to collect data were Parenting Styles Dimension Questionnaire (PSDQ) and Attitudes towards sexual debut questionnaire. Results indicated that there is a small positive relationship between Perceived benefits of having sex and permissive parenting style. A small positive relationship between perceived shame and guilt associated with having sex and authoritative parenting style was found. Moreover, a small negative relationship was found between Perceived shame and guilt associated with having sex and authoritarian parenting style. Standard multiple regression indicated that permissive parenting style followed by authoritative parenting style made the strongest contribution to explaining the dependent variable (Attitudes towards sexual debut). Adolescents who are raised by parents that adopt permissive and authoritative parenting style are having positive attitudes toward sex which can lead them to engage in early sexual debut. However adolescents that are raised by authoritarian parents have negative attitudes which can delay early sexual debut.
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    Exploring the impact of risk and protective factors on the experiences of refugee youth living in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal.
    (2017) Barakamfitiye, Kassa.; Sliep, Yvonne.
    The following study aims to provide an in-depth understanding of risk and protective factors experienced by refugee youth from the Democratic Republic of Congo residing in South Africa and their impact on the mental health of the group. The lived experiences and the mental health status and problems of adult refugees living in South Africa are well documented; however much less is known about the lived experiences and mental health status and problems of refugee youth living in South Africa. Refugee youth living in South Africa face a number of challenges due to a high level of risk factors in their daily lives. Risks can be moderated by protective factors. Protective factors reduce the impact of risk factors and act as coping mechanisms which youth use to cope with their everyday challenges. The interaction between risk and protective factors are important as they influence youth’s mental health status. Responses to stress can be internalized or externalized problems resulting in a compromised mental health status. If responded to appropriately it can result in prosocial behaviour. The Social Development Model (SDM) was used as the theoretical framework for the project. The model was used to provide an in-depth understanding of the interactions between risk and protective factors and the impact these factors have on mental health of refugee youth. The study was qualitative where data was collected in the form of individual semi-structured interviews with eight refugee youth from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) currently living in Durban. The sample was selected through convenience and purposive sampling techniques from a larger group from the same population. Study questions were based on the main risk and protective factors that are present to participants’ lives, including those related to structural violence. The findings of the study were analyzed and presented through thematic analysis. The study revealed several key findings related to the impact of xenophobia and financial difficulties. The results of the study showed that the young women tend to internalize problems resulting in more emotional and psychological distress such as social withdrawal, anxiety and fear and young men showed both internalized and externalized problems such as fear, avoidance, poor concentration, physical violence and so forth. Altruistic tendencies, empathy and sympathy were found in both male and female participants. These prosocial behaviours were as a result of the interaction between the risk and protective factors present in the youth’s lives.