Communication on sexuality within the family has been considered a determinant factor for the sexual behaviour of young women, contributing to delaying sexual initiation. Taking into account that young women are increasingly exposed to sexualized messages, they need clear, trustful and open communication on sexuality more than ever. However, in Mozambique, communication about sexuality is hampered by strict social norms. This paper evaluates the case of an intervention aimed at reducing the generational barrier for talking about sexuality and to contribute to better communication within the family context.
The intervention consisted of three weekly one-hour coached sessions in which female adults and young interacted about sexuality. Realist evaluation was used as a framework to assess context, mechanisms, and outcomes of the intervention. Interviews were conducted among 13 participants of the sessions.
The interaction sessions were positively appreciated by the participants and contributed to change norms and attitudes towards communication on sexuality within families. Recognition of similarities and awareness of differences were key in the mechanisms leading to these outcomes. This was reinforced by the use of visual materials and the atmosphere of respect and freedom of speech that characterized the interactions. Limiting factors were related to the long-standing taboo on sexuality and existing misconceptions on sexuality education and talks about sex.
By elucidating mechanisms and contextual factors our study adds knowledge on strategies to improve transgenerational communication about sexuality.