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Rwanda

Adolescents in Rwanda. Photo: Plan International

The context: Rwanda is a small landlocked country that borders Uganda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The most densely populated country in Africa, about one-quarter of its citizens are adolescents between the ages of 10 and 19, and 40% live below the poverty line.

Education and learning: Although younger adolescents’ access to primary school is good, older adolescents have only limited access to secondary school. Enrolment rates are under one-third for girls and just over one-quarter for boys.1 Girls are more likely to enrol in both primary and secondary school than boys, but recent trends are concerning: over the last decade, girls’ primary repetition rate has increased, their primary completion rate has declined, their transition rate to lower-secondary school has dropped and their enrolment in upper-secondary school has declined relative to that of boys.2

Bodily autonomy, integrity and freedom from violence: Child marriage is rare in Rwanda, but girls are vulnerable to other forms of violence – including physical and sexual violence. Sexual violence is often perpetrated by older men (‘sugar daddies’) who exploit girls by promising them money or gifts in exchange for sex.3 It is rarely reported – in part because prosecution rates are low. Corporal punishment is very common in Rwanda and impacts both boys and girls at both home and at school.4

Health, nutrition, and sexual and reproductive health: Younger adolescents are comparatively unlikely to become pregnant in Rwanda. However, by the age of 18, one-fifth of girls are pregnant.5 In addition, Rwanda is one of the few countries in which rates of teenage pregnancy are increasing. Rwandan 18–19-year-old girls are 10 times more likely to become HIV-positive than boys of the same age, in part due to the fact that their partners are older men.6 Little is known about adolescent girls’ and boys’ broader health or nutrition.

Psychosocial well-being: Asked to identify the important drivers of their own happiness, adolescent girls in Rwanda report attending – and succeeding in – school, as well as having parental support, friends and a measure of control over their own lives.7 Poverty, unplanned pregnancy and violence are reported by girls to be detrimental to their well-being.8

Voice and agency: Rwanda is an international leader on women’s access to voice and agency, boasting the world’s highest rate of women’s parliamentary representation at the national level. Research found that some adolescent girls see the large number of female MPs as role models, encouraging them to raise their aspirations.9 However, adolescent girls’ access to decision-making at household and community levels is limited by social norms that encourage them to do as adults and men tell them.10

Economic empowerment: Poverty limits the trajectories of Rwandan adolescents. Nearly 40% are poor and nearly 20% are extremely poor.11 Most older teenagers are employed, primarily in agriculture. Girls are disadvantaged compared to boys. Not only are their unemployment rates higher, but they are more likely to be confined to the agricultural sector and to be unpaid workers.12

The evidence base: Our Evidence Mappings concluded that there is considerable evidence about adolescent girls in Rwanda – but that, outside of educational statistics, much of it centres around older girls. In addition, sexual and reproductive health is over-represented.1314

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Ethiopia
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Bodily integrity and freedom from violence
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17.06.20
Intersecting inequalities, gender and adolescent health in Ethiopia
Sexual reproductive health and nutrition
Ethiopia
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17.06.20 | Sexual reproductive health and nutrition | Journal articles | Ethiopia
Intersecting inequalities, gender and adolescent health in Ethiopia
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Toolkits and survey instruments
05.06.20
GAGE Ethiopia: overview
Education and learning
Ethiopia
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05.06.20 | Education and learning | Toolkits and survey instruments | Ethiopia
GAGE Ethiopia: overview
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Policy briefs
27.04.20
Exploring adolescents' experiences and priorities in Ethiopia under covid-19
Education and learning
Ethiopia
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27.04.20 | Education and learning | Policy briefs | Ethiopia
Exploring adolescents' experiences and priorities in Ethiopia under covid-19
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Toolkits and survey instruments
30.01.20
Ethiopia baseline survey 2017/18
Education and learning
Ethiopia
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30.01.20 | Education and learning | Toolkits and survey instruments | Ethiopia
Ethiopia baseline survey 2017/18
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Journal articles
22.11.19
Do restrictive gender attitudes and norms influence physical and mental health during very young adolescence? Evidence from Bangladesh and Ethiopia
Psychosocial well-being
Bangladesh | Ethiopia
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22.11.19 | Psychosocial well-being | Journal articles | Bangladesh
Do restrictive gender attitudes and norms influence physical and mental health during very young adolescence? Evidence from Bangladesh and Ethiopia
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Journal articles
29.10.19
Exploring the role of evolving gender norms in shaping adolescents’ experiences of violence in pastoralist Afar, Ethiopia
Bodily integrity and freedom from violence
Ethiopia
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29.10.19 | Bodily integrity and freedom from violence | Journal articles | Ethiopia
Exploring the role of evolving gender norms in shaping adolescents’ experiences of violence in pastoralist Afar, Ethiopia
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Policy briefs
09.09.19
Child marriage, intimate partner violence and mental health among young Ethiopian women
Bodily integrity and freedom from violence
Ethiopia
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09.09.19 | Bodily integrity and freedom from violence | Policy briefs | Ethiopia
Child marriage, intimate partner violence and mental health among young Ethiopian women
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Evidence reviews
06.08.19
Raising the visibility of IDPs: a case study of gender- and age-specific vulnerabilities among Ethiopian IDP adolescents
Education and learning
Ethiopia
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06.08.19 | Education and learning | Evidence reviews | Ethiopia
Raising the visibility of IDPs: a case study of gender- and age-specific vulnerabilities among Ethiopian IDP adolescents
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Policy briefs
02.06.19
Leave no adolescent behind: the gender- and age-specific vulnerabilities of adolescent refugees and IDPs
Education and learning
Ethiopia | Rwanda
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02.06.19 | Education and learning | Policy briefs | Ethiopia
Leave no adolescent behind: the gender- and age-specific vulnerabilities of adolescent refugees and IDPs
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Reports
21.05.19
Adolescent psychosocial well-being and voice and agency in Ethiopia
Voice and agency
Ethiopia
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21.05.19 | Voice and agency | Reports | Ethiopia
Adolescent psychosocial well-being and voice and agency in Ethiopia
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Policy briefs
21.05.19
Gender and regional inequalities in adolescent bodily integrity and freedom from violence in Ethiopia
Bodily integrity and freedom from violence
Ethiopia
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21.05.19 | Bodily integrity and freedom from violence | Policy briefs | Ethiopia
Gender and regional inequalities in adolescent bodily integrity and freedom from violence in Ethiopia
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Reports
21.05.19
Adolescent well-being in Ethiopia: exploring gendered capabilities, contexts and change strategies
Education and learning
Ethiopia
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21.05.19 | Education and learning | Reports | Ethiopia
Adolescent well-being in Ethiopia: exploring gendered capabilities, contexts and change strategies
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Policy briefs
21.05.19
Gender and regional inequalities in adolescent psychosocial well-being and voice and agency
Voice and agency
Ethiopia
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21.05.19 | Voice and agency | Policy briefs | Ethiopia
Gender and regional inequalities in adolescent psychosocial well-being and voice and agency
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Reports
20.05.19
Adolescent health, nutrition and sexual and reproductive health in Ethiopia
Sexual reproductive health and nutrition
Ethiopia
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20.05.19 | Sexual reproductive health and nutrition | Reports | Ethiopia
Adolescent health, nutrition and sexual and reproductive health in Ethiopia
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Policy briefs
20.05.19
Gender and regional inequalities in adolescent health and nutrition in Ethiopia
Sexual reproductive health and nutrition
Ethiopia
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20.05.19 | Sexual reproductive health and nutrition | Policy briefs | Ethiopia
Gender and regional inequalities in adolescent health and nutrition in Ethiopia
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Reports
20.05.19
Adolescent education and learning in Ethiopia
Education and learning
Ethiopia
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20.05.19 | Education and learning | Reports | Ethiopia
Adolescent education and learning in Ethiopia
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Reports
20.05.19
Adolescent economic empowerment in Ethiopia
Economic empowerment
Ethiopia
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20.05.19 | Economic empowerment | Reports | Ethiopia
Adolescent economic empowerment in Ethiopia
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Reports
20.05.19
Adolescent bodily integrity and freedom from violence in Ethiopia
Bodily integrity and freedom from violence
Ethiopia
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20.05.19 | Bodily integrity and freedom from violence | Reports | Ethiopia
Adolescent bodily integrity and freedom from violence in Ethiopia
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Policy briefs
20.05.19
Gender and regional inequalities in adolescent education and learning in Ethiopia
Education and learning
Ethiopia
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20.05.19 | Education and learning | Policy briefs | Ethiopia
Gender and regional inequalities in adolescent education and learning in Ethiopia
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Policy briefs
19.05.19
Gender and regional inequalities in adolescent economic empowerment
Economic empowerment
Ethiopia
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19.05.19 | Economic empowerment | Policy briefs | Ethiopia
Gender and regional inequalities in adolescent economic empowerment
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Policy briefs
21.03.19
Leave no one behind: an agenda for action to enhance the full capabilities of adolescents with disabilities in Ethiopia
Education and learning
Ethiopia
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21.03.19 | Education and learning | Policy briefs | Ethiopia
Leave no one behind: an agenda for action to enhance the full capabilities of adolescents with disabilities in Ethiopia
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Journal articles
11.03.19
Adolescent sexual and reproductive health in Ethiopia and Rwanda: a qualitative exploration of the role of social norms
Sexual reproductive health and nutrition
Ethiopia | Rwanda
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11.03.19 | Sexual reproductive health and nutrition | Journal articles | Ethiopia
Adolescent sexual and reproductive health in Ethiopia and Rwanda: a qualitative exploration of the role of social norms
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Policy briefs
06.03.19
Leave no one behind: shining a spotlight on adolescent Congolese refugees in Rwanda
Education and learning
Rwanda
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06.03.19 | Education and learning | Policy briefs | Rwanda
Leave no one behind: shining a spotlight on adolescent Congolese refugees in Rwanda
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Policy briefs
10.12.18
Policy and legal analysis notes: a review of the National Policy against Gender-Based Violence in Rwanda
Education and learning
Rwanda
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10.12.18 | Education and learning | Policy briefs | Rwanda
Policy and legal analysis notes: a review of the National Policy against Gender-Based Violence in Rwanda
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Policy briefs
10.12.18
Policy and legal analysis notes: a review of the Strategic Plan for a Multisectoral Response to Violence Against Women and Children in Ethiopia
Education and learning
Ethiopia
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10.12.18 | Education and learning | Policy briefs | Ethiopia
Policy and legal analysis notes: a review of the Strategic Plan for a Multisectoral Response to Violence Against Women and Children in Ethiopia
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Policy briefs
24.07.18
Adolescents with disabilities: enhancing resilience and delivering inclusive development
Education and learning
Bangladesh | Ethiopia
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24.07.18 | Education and learning | Policy briefs | Bangladesh
Adolescents with disabilities: enhancing resilience and delivering inclusive development
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Evidence reviews
20.12.17
Adolescent girls' capabilities in Ethiopia: a synopsis of the evidence
Education and learning
Ethiopia
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20.12.17 | Education and learning | Evidence reviews | Ethiopia
Adolescent girls' capabilities in Ethiopia: a synopsis of the evidence
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Evidence reviews
20.12.17
Adolescent girls' capabilities in Ethiopia: the state of the evidence on programme effectiveness
Education and learning
Ethiopia
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20.12.17 | Education and learning | Evidence reviews | Ethiopia
Adolescent girls' capabilities in Ethiopia: the state of the evidence on programme effectiveness
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Evidence reviews
20.12.17
Adolescent girls' capabilities in Ethiopia: the state of the evidence
Education and learning
Ethiopia
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20.12.17 | Education and learning | Evidence reviews | Ethiopia
Adolescent girls' capabilities in Ethiopia: the state of the evidence
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Evidence reviews
19.12.17
Adolescent girls' capabilities in Rwanda: a synopsis of the evidence
Education and learning
Rwanda
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19.12.17 | Education and learning | Evidence reviews | Rwanda
Adolescent girls' capabilities in Rwanda: a synopsis of the evidence
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Evidence reviews
19.12.17
Adolescent girls’ capabilities in Rwanda: the state of the evidence on programme effectiveness
Education and learning
Rwanda
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19.12.17 | Education and learning | Evidence reviews | Rwanda
Adolescent girls’ capabilities in Rwanda: the state of the evidence on programme effectiveness
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Evidence reviews
19.12.17
Adolescent girls' capabilities in Rwanda: the state of the evidence
Education and learning
Rwanda
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19.12.17 | Education and learning | Evidence reviews | Rwanda
Adolescent girls' capabilities in Rwanda: the state of the evidence
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Reports
10.10.17
Exploring Ethiopian adolescents' gendered experiences and perspectives
Education and learning
Ethiopia
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10.10.17 | Education and learning | Reports | Ethiopia
Exploring Ethiopian adolescents' gendered experiences and perspectives
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Reports
10.10.17
Exploring Rwandan adolescents' gendered experiences and perspectives
Education and learning
Rwanda
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10.10.17 | Education and learning | Reports | Rwanda
Exploring Rwandan adolescents' gendered experiences and perspectives
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