Young adults account for half of all new HIV infections worldwide; one in three people living with HIV/AIDS are between 15 and 24 years old. Sex education is a key element for reducing dangerous sexual behaviors among young adults. Data from the 2002 population-based Albania Reproductive Health Survey (ALRHS) were used to assess knowledge of HIV/AIDS and the effect of school-based sex-education courses on knowledge among 15-24-year-old women. Despite recommendations to include HIV in school curricula, just 55% of young women had received in-school education on the topic of HIV/AIDS. Most had heard of HIV/AIDS, but knowledge indicators were significantly higher among women who reported in-school HIV-education than those without such education. Greater efforts must be made to increase in-school sex-education to prevent young adults contracting sexual diseases such as AIDS/HIVS. This topic has been taken priority on nation.
Although some may not agree with us, we think that sexual education should be introduced starting at primary school curriculum. The reason being there are thousands of young adults and teenagers who lack the knowledge about sexuality and reproduction. Every day in our nation Albania, at least one student has an abortion. The Organization for the Propagation of Sexual Education (SOPSE) was officially launched in November 1993, and it was initially based among students of the University of Tirana. After attending workshops concerned with health education, they became the first peer educators for sex, contraception and AIDS information. Three organizations have expressed their concern over the views of the Ministry that sex-ed will not be treated as separate subject in the curriculum, but will be integrated in the existing educational contents. They are convinced that the best solution would be a separate programme presented by experts in various fields. We believed that this will make the students more accepting to each topic and for the contents to be easily understood. We also consider this an important subject to be focused on since the number of teens with HIV/AIDS is on the rise each year, and the age is dangerously dropping with it.
Even though Albania is not choosing to focus all its effort on educating the youth of our nation on sex and the what may occur afterwards, we have become more aware of the young adults are becoming involved with. This is a matter that will not be taken lightly and we hope to become more active in the years to come. For the time being we have many organization working towards a common goal, representatives from Action Plus, an Albanian nongovernmental organization concerned with AIDS prevention, which distributed condoms and information at to youth. In addition the organization SOPSE puts together a annually masked ball in help fundraise