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HOME: POPULATION ISSUES: PREVENTING HIV INFECTION: Global Youth Partners
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Nigeria

Youth Partner

Name: Eunice Aghete
Age: 18
Nationality: Nigerian
Affiliated Organization:

Action Health Incorporated (AHI)

 

Eunice Aghete worked as a youth assistant in AHI for the space of one year in it's Youth Skill Development Programme. As a youth assistant, she participated in a monthly outreach programme in which she educated her peers about HIV/AIDS. She was also a discussant of a TV programme also run by her organization.

While in secondary school, Eunice was the president of the Health and Life Planning Club also managed by AHI. She won a poetry competition for two years and was part of a singing troupe, which composed songs to educate young people about HIV/AIDS.

As a Global Youth Partner, Eunice believes that business organizations should be a major stakeholder in increasing HIV/AIDS awareness among young people. She is presently coordinating a campaign for this group tagged "KEEP AIDS AT BAY."

She enjoys singing, reading, cooking and making friends. Her greatest role model is her mother.

 

UNFPA in Nigeria

The first case of AIDS in Nigeria was reported in 1986 and since then, the prevalence rate has steadily increased to the current figure of 5.8%. Prevalence is highest among the age group 15 – 29 years, and youth 20- 24 years of age report a prevalence rate of 8.0%.

The HIV/AIDS Emergency Action Plan (HEAP) is a three-year strategy outlined by the Government to implement over 200 short-term and high-impact activities to address the epidemic. Young persons are specifically targeted by the activities of NGOs, the National Action Committee on AIDS (NACA), as well as its State and local Government organs. International development partners include the United Nations System in Nigeria. The National Youth Service Corps Reproductive Health and HIV/AIDS Prevention Project was launched recently. Telephone hotlines for counseling and information are now available with support from international partners.

UNFPA’s efforts in SRH in relation to HIV/AIDS focus on prevention strategies, advocacy, national capacity building, use of evidence and knowledge-based approaches; and promotion, coordination and strengthening of partnerships to enhance provision and utilization of quality SRH services. UNFPA is the current chair of the Expanded Theme Group on HIV/AIDS in Nigeria.

Country strategies include advocacy and support for the creation of supportive and enabling environment for HIV prevention and access to information and services for young people. Awareness creation and behavior change programs for both in- and out-of-school youth have been strengthened to include television and radio entertainment/educational drama series on STIs and HIV/AIDS. Male condoms are readily available and the female condom has also been introduced.

UNFPA embarked on the development and production of a television series on adolescent reproductive health entitled “I NEED TO KNOW” in 1999. The TV series commenced its second season of production in 2003 with funding from the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) and has been extended in local languages on over 20 television and 15 radio stations across Nigeria. The second season of the series focuses on HIV/AIDS information. An impact survey conducted in 2000 indicated that the drama is used by families as a tool for parent-child communication and has contributed to breaking the silence on ASRH issues.

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