Make it Happen!
HIV is a preventable infection, but prevention demands sustainable and evidence-based programs and policies. Programs focused on youth with active youth involvement have been shown to decrease HIV prevalence and increase condom use. However, many global, national, and local leaders and policy makers continue to leave youth out of interventions affecting their lives. It is necessary to engage, encourage, and acknowledge youth as assets in the fight against the HIV/AIDS epidemic.
Involving young people and working in a true youth-adult partnership improves young people’s knowledge and skills by empowering them to take initiative and gain self-confidence. Armed with support and training, young people can be highly effective advocates for their sexual and reproductive health needs and provide much-needed youth perspectives to policy makers and program managers. This in turn makes programs and policies more sustainable, relevant, and effective.