Thailand: New Web Site Gives Advice on Sex
February 18, 2010
Sex education is going digital in Thailand with the launch of a Web site targeting teenagers and their parents.
The site, talkaboutsex.thaihealth.or.th, offers sex information in everyday language as well as an interactive portal for questions and answers. The Thai Health Promotion Foundation (ThaiHealth) and the Education Ministry are sponsoring the site.
The launch was timed with the release of a UNICEF report showing Thailand has 150,000 mothers under age 20 -- among the region's highest rates of birth to young mothers. The report notes that Switzerland has a thorough approach toward sex education and has the world's lowest number of teenage mothers.
"What we must do is equip our youth with good information to promote a positive attitude towards sex and better access to birth control and STD prevention," said Nattaya Boonpakdee, ThaiHealth's sexual health promotion plan manager.
Thai officials are partnering with 122 schools and 900 public libraries to promote the new sex education site, said ThaiHealth Deputy Manager Krisada Reung-areerat.
Current reports suggest a lack of sex education in the country. In a January poll of 2,060 residents ages nine to 18, 65 percent said they had no information about birth control. Among respondents ages nine to 12, only 10 percent knew about birth control, and 64 percent did not to know how to prevent STDs, said poll director Noppadol Kannikar.
Parents should provide sex education, said 60 percent of respondents. Teachers and close friends also were mentioned as important sources of information. Parents would be the most important source of information for a sexual problem, said 59 percent of respondents. Close friends, medical professionals, and teachers also were important. Older youth were more likely to turn to friends than were younger respondents.
The Nation (Bangkok)