E2A’s First-Time Parent Framework
Over the past five years, E2A has been drawing global attention to an important subset of youth—first-time parents (FTPs)—defined as young women under the age of 25 years who are pregnant with or have one child, and their male partners.
Our focus on FTPs was triggered by efforts to understand the diversity of youth reproductive health experiences and needs. A review of global data pointed to a large sub-set of young first-time mothers who are at increased risk of poor pregnancy, delivery, and child health outcomes, a situation compounded by multiple factors that limit their access to timely health information and services. We’ve made it a priority to close this gap by reaching FTPs in multiple contexts with health and gender interventions and by gathering new evidence on effective programming for this sub-set of youth.
In developing our First-Time Parent Framework, E2A deliberately drew on concepts and models that are familiar to the family planning and reproductive health community—the life-course approach and the socio-ecological model.
The framework applies these two concepts as analytical lenses for exploring the FTP experience, and:
• Defines an FTP lifestage within the broader evolution of sexual and reproductive activity typically experienced over an individual’s lifetime—from puberty to parenthood and beyond;
• Adapts the socio-ecological approach to understand the broader FTP social system, and the multiple personal and environmental factors/interactions that influence health choice and action.