Δευτέρα, 12 Αυγούστου 2013

Press statement / UNAIDS calls for youth activists on HIV to be change agents

GENEVA,-12 August 2013-

On this International Youth Day, the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) calls on young people to use their creativity and leadership in the AIDS response.

“As agents of change, young people must claim their right to health and be part of the decision making processes that will impact their lives,”
said UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibé.

There have been tremendous achievements in the response to the HIV epidemic for adolescents and youth but much more needs to be done. 

Young people are not only beneficiaries of HIV services but also play an important role as partners and leaders in the AIDS response. 

This is why UNAIDS has expanded its youth programme, / http://actupathens.blogspot.gr/2013/08/blog-post_12.html / and recently established the Youth Advisory Forum to channel young people’s voices and opinions into key UNAIDS initiatives. 

Globally, an estimated 4.6 million young people are living with HIV.

Each day, about 2300 young people are newly infected with HIV. 

Many young people living with HIV do not have access to treatment or do not know their HIV status. 

In many countries, young people are prevented from accessing sexual and reproductive health services, including HIV testing and condoms, due to age-related restrictions.

UNAIDS
The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) leads and inspires the world to achieve its shared vision of zero new HIV infections, zero discrimination and zero AIDS-related deaths. 

UNAIDS unites the efforts of 11 UN organizations
UNHCR, 
UNICEF, 
WFP, 
UNDP, 
UNFPA, 
UNODC, 
UN Women, 
ILO, 
UNESCO, 
WHO and the 
World Bank
and works closely with global and national partners to maximize results for the AIDS response. 

Learn more at unaids.org and 
connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.

from:
http://www.unaids.org/en/resources/presscentre/pressreleaseandstatementarchive/2013/august/20130812iyd/

Youth organizations form a pact for social transformation in the AIDS response

Participants at the Youth and UNAIDS event held in Hammamet, Tunisia from the 20-22 of May. Credit: UNAIDS
23 May 2013
 
AIDS activism has radically changed since the beginning of the epidemic. 

New modes of communication are amplifying people’s voices, creating cross-national webs of solidarity opening up new opportunities for progressive social change.

Young activists in countries around the world are increasingly demanding HIV services to be tailored to their needs and claiming their seat at the decision-making table.

While the HIV prevalence has fallen by nearly 27% among young people aged 15-24 globally between 2001 and 2011, young people still account for 40% of all new HIV infections among adults. 
In 2011, there were some 4.6 million young people living with HIV.

Against this backdrop, UNAIDS brought together 12 global and regional youth organizations working on HIV, sexual and reproductive health and rights, and lesbian, gay and transgender rights  with the 16 community, country and regional youth activists that constitute the recently established UNAIDS Youth Advisory Forum. 
The aim was to strategize on a clear direction to move the AIDS response forward for young people.  

“Many small organizations lack the time, resources, and strategic space to reflect on their work and forge new alliances,” 
said Pablo Aguilera, 
director of the HIV Young Leaders Fund and member of the UNAIDS Youth Advisory Forum. 
“We called for this meeting to ensure the movement is responsive to the needs of young people most affected by HIV.”

To deliver results for young people on the ground, a decentralized, connected global youth movement—that thinks globally but acts locally is needed to initiate a new wave of activism in the AIDS response.

The meeting, called the Youth and UNAIDS: A pact for social transformation took place in Hammamet, Tunisia from the 20-22 of May. 
The main outcome of the consultation was a pact outlining five key themes that cut across individual organizational agendas where youth organizations can make tangible impact towards the goals set in the 2011 United Nations General Assembly Political Declaration on HIV and AIDS.

The five themes include: Integrating HIV services into sexual and reproductive health services, with a focus on government accountability and sexuality education; enabling legal environments and removing punitive laws that impede access to services for young key populations at higher risk; scaling up treatment and disaggregating data for evidence informed advocacy; using resources effectively; and ensuring that HIV remains a priority in the Post-2015 development framework through strategic lobbying of national delegations.

“This new commitment to collaborate around specific priorities is a radical departure from business as usual in the youth AIDS response. 
Through strengthening collective action that goes beyond organizational agendas, we hope the movement can achieve concrete change for young people affected by HIV,” 
said Caitlin Chandler, 
community representative who co-facilitated the meeting together with Beth Goodey from the youth-led development agency Restless Development.

Supporting increased collaboration and strategic direction of the youth movement in the AIDS response is a key priority for the new UNAIDS youth programme, which aims to increase youth leadership, ownership, and mobilization in the AIDS response at the country, regional, and global level by 2015 and beyond.

“We want to work closer with organizations of young people living with HIV and young key populations at higher risk to create broad alliances,” 
said Mariangela Simao
UNAIDS Director of Gender, Human Rights and Community Mobilization Department.
 “It’s an effective strategy to ensure national ownership for progressive social change—because the demand for change will come from within,” 
she added.

from: