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"Community based approach to the prevention of HIV/AIDS in Palawan, Philippines."


Int Conf AIDS. 1996 Jul 7-12;11(1):381 (abstract no. Tu.C.2671). Unique

Issue: Until recently, most HIV/AIDS prevention initiatives in the Philippines have been concentrated in Metro Manila and areas surrounding the former United States military bases. Areas outside Metro Manila being developed as major tourist destinations, such as Palawan, are in urgent need of community-based programmes on HIV/AIDS prevention. Project: This is a grassroots-level, pioneering prevention program in a remote Philippine province popular with tourists. Target populations include commercial sex workers (CSWs), bar operators, and military personnel. Two community workers-a nurse and social worker-carry out the various awareness/educational activities, including frequent visits to the work places of CSWs, needs assessment of target groups through focused group discussions, psychosocial counseling of CSWs, development and dissemination of IEC materials, training of peer educators, training of provincial government and NGO staff, and initiating the establishment of a province-wide interagency network. Human rights, specifically women's rights, and empowerment at both the individual and group levels, are the key themes of the project. Results: This educational initiative, now on its second year is a response to the common needs identified by different community sectors. In hand with educational activities on HIV/AIDS prevention are empowerment and capability-building efforts to ensure that results can be sustained at both individual and local group levels. So far, an interagency network has been established; a total of 3,806 stickers, 411 posters, and 700 information booklets, given out; 548 persons from the tourism and related industries (employers, workers, CSWs), and military personnel have participated in 15 basic sessions on HIV/AIDS awareness; five CSW peer educators have been trained; and thirteen (13) staff members from nine (9) organisations have joined the training sessions on HIV/AIDS counseling. Lessons Learned: Inputs crucial to this project's success include the rigorous review of experiences by others in the HIV/AIDS arena; joint planning between target groups and other community members; intensive staff training both before and during the project implementation; programme development; implementation and evaluation research assistance from the academic and linking organisation (funding source).

*Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome/PREVENTION & CONTROL *Community Health Services *HIV Infections/PREVENTION & CONTROL *Prostitution


Information in this article was accurate in January 30, 1997. The state of the art may have changed since the publication date. This material is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between you and your doctor. Always discuss treatment options with a doctor who specializes in treating HIV.