STIGMA OF YOUNG PEOPLE AS A CHALLENGE IN THE FIGHT AGAINST HIV

269 views

Published on

An estimated104,000 children aged 0-14 years are infected with HIV in Kenya.
The HIV prevalence rate of youth aged 15-24 years is 2.1%.
Among adolescents aged 12-14 years, 7% have had sex.
Among young people aged 15-24 years, 66% females and 59% males have had sex.

(KAIS 2012)

Stigma and discrimination associated with HIV & AIDS remains a key barrier to preventing new infections and accessing adequate care, support and treatment among youth.
Misperceptions about HIV transmission modes among the youth still exist despite HIV prevention efforts to provide accurate information on HIV and AIDS to the youth.

Published in: Healthcare
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

STIGMA OF YOUNG PEOPLE AS A CHALLENGE IN THE FIGHT AGAINST HIV

  1. 1. STIGMA OF YOUNG PEOPLE AS A CHALLENGE IN THE FIGHT AGAINST HIV NOPE BIENNUAL PEER EDUCATION CONFERENCE 19th June, 2014 Ann Wahinya Global Communities
  2. 2. Presentation Outline • Background of young people and HIV • Effects of HIV and AIDS related Stigma and Discrimination on youth • Gaps • HOPE Program • Methodology • Lessons learnt • Recommendations • Conclusion
  3. 3. Background of Young People and HIV • An estimated104,000 children aged 0-14 years are infected with HIV in Kenya. • The HIV prevalence rate of youth aged 15-24 years is 2.1%. • Among adolescents aged 12-14 years, 7% have had sex. • Among young people aged 15-24 years, 66% females and 59% males have had sex. (KAIS 2012)
  4. 4. Background of Young People and HIV cont… • Stigma and discrimination associated with HIV & AIDS remains a key barrier to preventing new infections and accessing adequate care, support and treatment among youth. • Misperceptions about HIV transmission modes among the youth still exist despite HIV prevention efforts to provide accurate information on HIV and AIDS to the youth.
  5. 5. Background of Young People and HIV cont… • Adolescence (age 9 to 18) is a critical age for addressing stigma: • Young people want to belong with their peers • Experience rapid body changes • Face significant peer pressure • Can experiment with alcohol/drugs • Period in which many become sexually active.
  6. 6. Effects of HIV and AIDS related Stigma and Discrimination on youth • Deters young people from getting tested. • May lead to withdrawal from school due to reduced self-esteem, fear and isolation. • Perceptions of social rejection, disapproval and discrimination makes HIV+ youth reluctant or afraid to take and/or seek treatment and support services.
  7. 7. Gaps • Missed opportunities to identify HIV+ learners at school level to ensure support. • Lack of adequate HIV & AIDS related training and sensitization among teachers and head teachers. • Lack of necessary care and support systems for positive learners at school level. • Most youth are unaware of the damage that stigma causes to their peers who are living with HIV. • Parents lack skills, knowledge and comfort to
  8. 8. HOPE program: Goal • The Healthy Outcomes through Prevention Education (HOPE) program is a HIV prevention program working in 400 primary and secondary schools in Nairobi, Kiambu, Machakos & Kajiado Counties. • Goal: to improve students knowledge, attitude and practices (KAP) related to HIV and AIDS.
  9. 9. HOPE program: KAP baseline survey findings • Out of 1791 students interviewed on accepting attitudes towards PLWAS, 70.5% of all respondents held stigmatizing attitudes. • Over half of all the students interviewed (53%) indicated that if a family member tested positive this should remain a secret.
  10. 10. HOPE Program: Objectives related to stigma reduction • Reduce stigma and discrimination towards in and out of school youth living with HIV. • Enhance care, support and treatment of in- school youth living with HIV.
  11. 11. Methodology • HOPE employs a multi-prong approach to address HIV & AIDS related stigma and discrimination. • Equip students with knowledge and information to reduce: • stigma caused by misinformation and misperceptions. • stigmatizing attitudes among young people. • Train head teachers and teachers to deliver Life Skills Education. • Engage out-of-school YLHIV to share their
  12. 12. Methodology cont… • Established a referral strategy to enhance access to services by HIV+ learners. • Equip parents with knowledge, skills and confidence to communicate with their children on sexuality and sexual risk reduction. • Engage religious leaders in anti-stigma and anti-discrimination messaging.
  13. 13. Methodology cont… • Support MoEST to revise the Education Sector Policy on HIV and AIDS to ensure prevention, treatment, care and support to learners infected and affected by HIV. • Engaging the MoEST to integrate age appropriate comprehensive sexuality education into the life skills curriculum.
  14. 14. Lessons learnt • YLHIV sharing their experiences with in-school youth has encouraged disclosure by HIV+ learners. • Training head teachers and teachers on LSE has created an enabling environment that supports HIV+ learners in schools. • Establishing a referral strategy within schools has enhanced uptake of services for YLHIV.
  15. 15. Lessons learnt cont… • Equipping youth with knowledge and skills on HIV prevention with a focus on modes of transmission and effects of stigma has reduced stigma among those reached so far. • Empowering parents has resulted in open dialogue with their children which has re- enforced positive learning and improved parent/child relationships.
  16. 16. Recommendations • Actively engage YLHIV in the design and implementation of efforts to reduce stigma and discrimination. • Design and disseminate gender and age appropriate messages on HIV transmission tailored for youth and delivered through multiple modes. • Incorporate age appropriate CSE in LSE. • Strengthen linkages to youth friendly service providers.
  17. 17. Conclusion • Using an integrated approach is promising to reducing HIV and AIDS related stigma and discrimination. • Need for a more targeted and effective responsive on issues of HIV related stigma and discrimination. • Participation of YLHIV is crucial in minimizing HIV related stigma and discrimination.
  18. 18. Thank you for listening. Acknowledgement Ann Wahinya1 Betty Adera2 Kimberly Tilock3 Luciana Koske4 Lily Murei5 Fredrick Nyagah6

×