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UNESCO HIV and Health Education Clearinghouse

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  1. 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. …

  2. Child-focused state cash transfers and adolescent risk of HIV infection in South Africa: a propensity-score-matched case-control study

    Background: Effective and scalable HIV prevention for adolescents in sub-Saharan Africa is needed. Cash transfers can reduce HIV incidence through reducing risk behaviours. However, questions remain about their effectiveness within national poverty-alleviation programmes, and their effects on different behaviours in boys and girls. Methods: In this case-control study, we interviewed South African adolescents (aged 10–18 years) between 2009 and 2012. …

  3. HIV prevention for South African youth: which interventions work? A systematic review of current evidence

    South Africa's HIV prevalence among 15-24 year olds is one of the highest in the world. This systematic review looks at the evidence for youth HIV prevention in the country since 2000 and critically assesses interventions across four domains: study design and outcomes; intervention design; thematic focus and HIV causal pathways; and intervention delivery. Eight interventions were included in the review, all similar regarding content and objectives, but with variouis thematic foci, causal pathways, theoretical bases, delivery methods, intensity and duration. …

  4. Socioeconomic disadvantage and unsafe sexual behaviors among young women and men in South Africa

    Recent evidence suggests that the burden of new HIV infections in developing countries is concentrated among young people and females. Even with knowledge of how to protect oneself from infection, such information may not always be usable in daily situations of economic and social disadvantage that characterize the lives of many young people and women in poor countries. …

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