Teenage mothers in Venezuela – level 3
This display showing mannequins of pregnant schoolgirls at a Caracas mall is shocking shoppers and stirring debate over sex education in Venezuela.
Two local charities have dressed up three mannequins behind a shop window, showing the girls with bulging stomachs under their blue uniforms, used by schoolchildren there until the age of 15.
The idea is apparently to draw attention to an adolescent pregnancy rate they say is one of the worst in South America, with one girl under 18 becoming pregnant every three minutes and 23 per cent of all births coming in at that age category.
“We are not saying maternity is bad. This is not what we are saying. We are trying to say there is a time for everything and this is not the moment.
This is a time when girls are beginning their life as teenagers, when they are looking for an identity and are going through a series of changes, which are complicated enough at this stage without adding a pregnancy to the equation.”
The display will run for a month and may be extended to other malls around the nation of 30 million people.
Difficult words: mannequin (a model used to display clothes in a shop window), stir (start), bulging (round and big), rate (quantity or frequency), maternity (being a mother), identity (who you are), equation (a situation in which there are several factors), extend (make bigger).
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