Many young South Africans face tough social problems as a result of marginalisation. Increasingly HIV affects children and young people in terms of new infections and related psychosocial effects of bereavement, poverty and sibling care. ‘AIDS fatigue’ leads many young people to ignore traditional schools-based HIV education.
Disinterest, lack of life skills and low self-esteem mean many young people lack skills and knowledge they need to protect themselves from HIV infection. Coupled with misinformation, this results in high levels of stigma and discrimination against people living with HIV. Outside school hours many young people spend time on the street and are drawn easily into crime, drug and alcohol misuse and early sexual activity. Gender inequalities mean girls and young women are especially vulnerable to HIV transmission
Our programme aims to reduce the impact of HIV on vulnerable children through a structured programme of expressional art, participatory learning and narrative therapy