Ivy Kondowe

Ivy Kondowe (Chinangwa)

First female lecturer in Sports Sciences at Malawi University of Science and Technology. I hold a Masters Degree in Sport Recreation and Exercise Science from University of the Western Cape and a Bachelors Degree in Education majoring in Physical Education and Expressive Arts where i played netball in a college team. I have taught Physical Education at tertiary institutions. Head of Physical Education Department for 2 years. Held the position of General Secretary for Women Football Central Region Committee. Volunteer coach for athletes with intellectual disabilities. Works with Tertiary Students Sport Association of Malawi as coordinator for netball team. Key concerns are women and girls participation in sport and harassment of athletes with intellectual disabilities in sport. Developed and reviewed the current Physical Education Secondary School curriculum. Evaluated Physical Education textbooks for senior and junior secondary school. Developed and reviewed curriculum for bachelors degree in sports sciences for Malawi University of Science and Technology. I have made presentations on my research at national and international conferences

 

Barriers Towards Sexual and Reproductive Health Education for Athletes with Intellectual Disabilities.

Sexuality is an aspect of health and development that is often overlooked among athletes with intellectual disabilities. Athletes with intellectual disabilities (ID) face numerous health-related challenges. These include: physical health, psychological health and health provision barriers. Most of the athletes with intellectual disabilities demonstrate low level of sexual knowledge and receive inadequate sex education unlike their peers without such disabilities.
The paper is based on the results of focus group discussions with 15 parents of athletes with intellectual disabilities,10 services providers (teachers, health workers, social workers and care givers) and 15 athletes with intellectual disabilities from the Urban Southern Malawi.
The results show that low sexual knowledge coupled with issues of dependence on adults for personal care, social isolation and low self-esteem place athletes with intellectual disabilities at high risk for sexual abuse, sexually transmitted infections and unplanned pregnancies. Parents, educators and health workers often find it difficult to discuss issues of sexuality with individuals with intellectual disabilities. In addition, lack of communication skills and resources combined with prevalent societal stigma surrounding sexuality and disability are also seen as barriers. Furthermore, societal misconceptions and beliefs about people with disabilities as being innocent, naïve and asexual.
This paper recommends further exploration of the possibilities of appropriate support systems for adolescent athletes with intellectual disabilities towards reproductive and sexual health education in schools. Again, Special Olympics Malawi should come up with plans and implementation of Sexual and Reproductive Health Programs for athletes with intellectual disabilities in the country.

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