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Jamaica's "Right to Know" initative: Promoting adolescent participation in HIV prevention and communication services and activities.

Campbell P, Brown D, Kelly C; International Conference on AIDS (15th : 2004 : Bangkok, Thailand).

Int Conf AIDS. 2004 Jul 11-16; 15: abstract no. ThPeE8072.

UNICEF, Kingston, Jamaica

Issues: One to 2 per cent of Jamaicans are living with HIV and adolescents remain at higher risk of infection, with girls 3 times more likely than boys to become infected. While knowledge levels are extremely high, nearly 70 per cent of adolescents consider themselves at no risk of infection. Their limited participation in HIV prevention efforts contributes to this 'knowledge-behaviour' gap and cultural misconceptions are widespread. Description: Jamaica's "Right to Know" (RTK) Initiative aimed to bridge the 'knowledge-behaviour' gap by enabling informed life choices and fostering adolescent participation in HIV prevention efforts. Initiated in July 2002, the participatory action research (PAR) phase saw 30 adolescents (from 12 government agencies and youth NGOs) trained and conducting PAR with over 120 'hard-to-reach' peers. Their rich and insightful research findings informed the development of innovative communication strategies. Lessons learned: The youth to youth process increased ease of rapport and trust building, especially helpful when discussing issues of sexuality and sexual practices. Adult-youth collaboration strengthened especially in areas of program planning, design and community mobilization. Capacity was enhanced as young people and programme managers alike learned creative, participatory skills and techniques. The PAR process also generated actions and partnerships at multiple levels, by and on behalf of adolescents, strengthening program delivery and inter-agency coordination. Recommendations: Recommendations for HIV communication strategies included disaggregating messages for young men and women addressing gender stereotypes and economic influences; promoting the protective roles of positive peer models; developing or strengthening programmes that offer 'hands on' practical life skills; ensuring that messages and strategies are consistent with the values and norms of young people.

Publication Types:
  • Meeting Abstracts
  • Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Behavior
  • Communication
  • Demography
  • Female
  • HIV Infections
  • HIV Seropositivity
  • Health Planning Guidelines
  • Humans
  • Infection
  • Interpersonal Relations
  • Jamaica
  • Male
  • Peer Group
  • Sexual Behavior
  • Sexuality
  • education
  • prevention & control
Other ID:
  • GWAIDS0037617
UI: 102281833

From Meeting Abstracts

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