After the collapse of communism, the long transition in Albania has been plagued by a deep political and socio‐economic crisis for the last 22 years, creating new and complex challenges and risks for youth that previous generations did not experience. Young people in Albania face a range of SRHR unmet needs: the Albanian Demographic Health Survey (2009) shows that only 36% of girls and 22% of boys (15‐24 years old) have comprehensive knowledge about HIV/AIDS; condom use at first sexual intercourse is 19% among girls and 50% among boys (15‐24 years old); HIV testing is performed by 0.7% of girls and 1.2% of boys (15‐ 24 years old). In addition, the use of modern contraceptive is 10.8% and with Macedonia the country has the lowest rate in the European Region.
Even though sex education is compulsory at schools, this is presented at a late stage (7th grade), with limited hours and the terminology and messages are restrained and inappropriate in a number of cases. There is also an absence of effective teaching methodology and the lack of supportive environment hinders a positive behaviour change among youth. This evidences the clear need for Models of Comprehensive Sexuality Education (MCSE) that include not only youth in schools but that can reach the most vulnerable and at risk youth. The policy document will be an effective way for instance to reduce unplanned teenage pregnancies or Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) through education and information.