T.H. Chan School of Public Health Student Emma Din Researches Reproductive Health in Cameroon

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In Cameroon, 62.5 percent of the population is younger than 25 years old, 30 percent of women give birth before age 18, and each year, 782 maternal deaths result from every 100,000 live births. In January 2016, Emma Din, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health ’16, spent three weeks in Cameroon, utilizing a Center for African Studies J-Term Grant. Emma, who graduated with a Master of Science in Public Health, researched the unmet reproductive health needs of adolescents.

“I gained in-depth knowledge about the sexual and reproductive health context in Cameroon, the current state of adolescent reproductive health services, existing and in-development health policies, and gaps and opportunities.”

While conucting research at the Institute of Training and Demographic Research (IFORD) in Yaoundé, Emma focused on the intersection of contraception, sexual health information, and unwanted pregnancies among adolescents and youth. She met major figures in the field, including Sinata Koulla-Shiro, Secretary-General of the Cameroon Ministry of Public Health. “I gained in-depth knowledge about the sexual and reproductive health context in Cameroon, the current state of adolescent reproductive health services, existing and in-development health policies, and gaps and opportunities,” she said. “This was truly an incredible experience and it would not have been possible without funding from CAS.” Emma wrote her Master’s thesis based on her research in Cameroon.

The Center for African Studies is proud to create opportunities and resources for people to learn, research and share information related to Africa. Programs like the CAS J-Term Grant help us to increase research about Africa, African experiences and perspectives. Read more about the CAS J-Term Grant here.

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