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UNESCO HIV and Health Education Clearinghouse

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  1. How effective is comprehensive sexuality education in preventing HIV?

    This brief discusses the effectiveness of comprehensive sexuality education (CSE) in preventing HIV, and lists key findings and recommendations. It concludes that CSE is effective in decreasing HIV risk factors in adolescents and young people, and improving sexual and reproductive health (SRH) in general, including creating demand for SRH services. …

  2. A sexual and reproductive health peer education programme for girls in grades 7 to 9. Mentor’s manual

    This sexual and reproductive health (SRH) peer education programme was developed as part of the Department of Basic Education’s (DBE) Leveraging Partnerships to Achieve the Goals of South Africa’s HIV & AIDS and STI National Strategic Plan 2012–16, otherwise known as Keeping Girls in School. The aim of this component of the programme is to shift social norms and change sexual behaviour by reinforcing and supporting the SRH messages received via the curriculum in order to increase retention and reduce the risk of HIV infection and teenage pregnancy.

  3. Impact evaluation of a school-based sexuality and HIV prevention education activity in South Africa: baseline survey report

    Gaining the knowledge and skills necessary to make healthy choices about sexual behavior as adolescent learners transition to young adulthood is key to controlling the potentially devastating effects of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. …

  4. Experimental evaluation of school-based HIV programs in sub-Saharan Africa

    School-based adolescent health education programs represent a durable strategy in reducing the spread of HIV because they can leverage pre-existing social and organizational structures to reach large fractions of students at critical life stages. Many evaluations of school-based HIV programs draw on multilevel study designs that assign schools to treatment conditions or assign students to treatment conditions within blocks defined by school membership. …

  5. Accessing the ‘right’ kinds of material and symbolic capital: the role of cash transfers in reducing adolescent school absence and risky behaviour in South Africa

    This article investigates how well South Africa’s Child Support Grant (CSG) responds to the material and psychosocial needs of adolescents, and the resultant effects on schooling and risky behaviour. One driver of schooling decisions is shame related to poverty and the ‘social cost’ of school, where a premium must often be paid for fashionable clothes or accessories. The other driver relates to symbolic and consumptive capital gained through engaging in sexual exchange relationships. The anticipated impacts from the CSG are partial because of these non-material drivers of adolescent choices. …

  6. Opportunities for technology-based HIV prevention programming among high school students in Cape Town, South Africa

    One in three new cases of HIV in South Africa is among adolescents. Given that adolescents are particularly affected, scalable, and cost-effective prevention programs are urgently needed. This study aims to identify opportunities to integrate technology into youth HIV prevention efforts. In 2012, 1107 8th–11th graders completed a paper-and-pencil survey. Respondents were enrolled in one of three public high schools in Langa, a lower income community in Cape Town, South Africa. Eighty-nine percent of respondents have used text messaging (SMS) and 86% have gone online. …

  7. Commentary: Innovations in Programming for HIV Among Adolescents: Towards an AIDS-Free Generation

    In the effort to halt and reverse the spread of HIV and AIDS among adolescents, public health and medical experts, moral and political authorities across the globe have implemented a combination of interventions. …

  8. Addressing cross-generational sex: A desk review of research and programs

    Current interest in cross-generational sex is largely due to the feminization of the HIV and AIDS epidemic. Young women 15-24 years of age in sub-Saharan Africa are three times more likely to be infected with HIV than young men of the same age, four times more likely in Zambia, and a staggering five times more likely in Zimbabwe. But, in fact, ministries of education and others have had curricula and materials addressing the “sugar daddy” phenomenon for many years. …

  9. Mapping HIV services and policies for adolescents: A survey of ten countries in sub-Saharan Africa

    PEPFAR and USAID, in collaboration with UNICEF, supported AIDSTAR-One in conducting a mapping activity to identify HIV policies and services for adolescents in 10 sub-Saharan African countries: Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. This technical report summarizes AIDSTAR-One’s findings and is a resource for program planners and policymakers working to improve services and policies for HIV prevention, care, and treatment among adolescents and ALHIV in sub-Saharan Africa. …

  10. Efficacy of an American alcohol and hiv prevention curriculum adapted for use in South Africa: results of a pilot study in five township schools

    The high prevalence of HIV among young people in African countries underscores a pressing need for effective prevention interventions. Adapting school–based prevention programs developed in the United States for use in African schools may present an alternative to the time–consuming process of developing home–grown programs. The researchers report the results of a pretest–posttest field trial of an alcohol/ HIV prevention curriculum adapted from an American model and delivered to ninth-grade students in five South African township schools. …

  11. Application of the information, motivation and behavioural skills model for targeting HIV risk behaviour amongst adolescent learners in South Africa

    This paper discusses the application of an information, motivation and behavioural skills (IMB) model in a school-based programme for the reduction of HIV risk behaviour among 259 Grade 11 learners in two high schools in Alexandra township, Johannesburg. School 1 was the Experimental group, while School 2 was the Control group. After a baseline study (Time 1) at both schools, a 3-week intervention programme was conducted at School 1. A post-test (Time 2) was conducted at both schools. The intervention was repeated at School 2, followed by another post-test (Time 3) at both schools. …

  12. An HIV/AIDS knowledge scale for adolescents: item response theory analyses based on data from a study in South Africa and Tanzania

    A 14-item human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome knowledge scale was used among school students in 80 schools in 3 sites in Sub-Saharan Africa (Cape Town and Mankweng, South Africa, and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania). For each item, an incorrect or don't know response was coded as 0 and correct response as 1. Exploratory factor analyses based on polychoric correlations showed two separate factors for all sites. …

  13. Gender, peer and partner influences on adolescent HIV risk in rural South Africa

    In preparation for a school-based intervention in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, the authors conducted a cross-sectional survey of potential HIV risk factors in youth ages 14–17 (n=983). Boys were significantly more likely than girls to report lifetime sexual activity (37.7% v. 13.8%, P<0.01). Among boys and girls, 46.1% reported condom use at last sex. Discussion of condom use with a partner was the strongest predictor of condom use (boys, odds ratio (OR)=7.39; girls, OR=5.58, P<0.0001). …

  14. Scrutinize campaign: a youth HIV prevention campaign addressing multiple and concurrent partnerships

    Launched on South African television in June 2008, the Scrutinize Campaign was a year-long series of HIV prevention ads targeting multiple and concurrent sexual partnerships. Irreverent and humorous, with strong, colorful visuals, the campaign's ads were markedly different from previous South African HIV prevention campaigns for youth. Rather than telling the audience what to do, the Scrutinize campaign messaging encouraged those in the audience to scrutinize their own behavior, resulting in dramatic uptake of key HIV prevention messages.

  15. A tale of two countries: rethinking sexual risk for HIV among young people in South Africa and the United States

    This paper compares the sexual behaviors of young people in South Africa (SA) and the United States (US) with the aim of better understanding the potential role of sexual behavior in HIV transmission in these two countries that have strikingly different HIV epidemics. Nationally representative, population-based surveys of young people ages 18-24 years from SA (n = 7,548) and the US (n = 13,451) were used. The prevalence of HIV was 10.2% in SA and 1% in the US. …

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