The main aim of developing the handbook is to assist religious leaders and parents to provide effective sexual and reproductive health guidance to children and adolescents. Religious leaders are strategically placed to support adolescents because they are unanimously regarded as authority figures. Scriptures from both the Bible and the Quran were used to clarify the major themes discussed in this handbook. This handbook has two purposes:
- To provide information to religious leaders about adolescent sexual and reproductive health and rights, sexually-transmitted infections, and HIV and AIDS.
- To help religious leaders to communicate with adolescents about these issues within the context of shared faith.
Although there are numerous resources on adolescent sexual and reproductive health and rights (ASRHR), this handbook is different in two important respects:
- The focus is on religious leaders, who are in turn encouraged to work alongside parents, teachers and other service providers. Most of the available resources do not fully acknowledge religious leaders as a strategic constituency.
It seeks to promote active interaction among religious leaders, parents and young people. Through engaging with parents, religious leaders may discover the benefits of embracing a participatory approach.