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HIV/AIDS Awareness, Reproductive Health and Family Planning Program

Summary

The RVCP HIV/AIDS Awareness, Reproductive Health and Family Planning Program aims to limit the spread of HIV/AIDS through education of the youth to raise their awareness about HIV/AIDS whilst fighting the stigma and discrimination that affect the people living with HIV and AIDS.

Key program components

The RVCP HIV/AIDS Awareness, Reproductive Health and Family Planning Program organizes youth in anti-HIV/AIDS clubs to promote debates on sensitive issues in a friendlier environment. By 2010, the program had helped establish 8 Anti-AIDS youth clubs. Interactive methods are used in weekly health education sessions conducted by volunteers of Rwanda Village Concept Project.

The program also carries out HIV education sessions in primary schools and in non-schooling youth of the Huye sector. The teaching program consists of a module which is developed in a series of education sessions. The module comprises Anatomy and Physiology of the genitals, methods of HIV transmission, symptoms, prevention methods, HIV virus and AIDS, opportunist infections, voluntary testing, treatment and care of people living with HIV/AIDS, Culture and sex related taboos, Gender and HIV/AIDS, reproductive health and family planning. Upon completion of this module, the youth make a club of peer-educators. Those clubs of peer educators are thereafter involved community education and sensitization about HIV/AIDS.

RVCP believes that it is important to address the poverty and low income issues if people are to embrace life promoting behaviors. For this reason, the program helps the youth clubs to start income generating projects and provides them with advice to increase their production. The projects usually involve growing crops, keeping animals, handcraft and entertainment.

The project joins national and international campaign to fight against HIV/AIDS including the World AIDS Day (WAD) and the International Candle Light Memorial. The two events are annually organized by RVCP in collaboration with local partners. The Candlelight Memorial March aims to bring public attention to the damages caused by HIV/AIDS in the world and to express solidarity to the people affected by the disease.

Prior to the WAD, R-VCP organizes community outreach programs to sensitize the population about HIV/AIDS. The community mobilization involve sports competition between the different groups of young people and adults to raise awareness about HIV/AIDS in the community.