"...getting and keeping young people, especially girls in school dramatically lowers their vulnerability to HIV. With each additional year of education, girls and young women gain greater independence, including economic independence, and are better equipped to make decisions affecting their sexual lives." - Dr. Peter Piot, UNAIDS Executive Director
AIDS Conference reviews evidence linking girls’ education and HIV prevention
The UNAIDS Inter-Agency Task Team (IATT) on Education recognizes the crucial link between girls’ education and HIV prevention. It is organizing a session on ‘Leadership in Girls’ Education: An Essential Component in HIV Prevention’ at the International AIDS Conference, to be held 13–18 August 2006 in Toronto, Canada.
This provocative session will present compelling new evidence aimed at mobilizing leadership on girls’ education and bridging the efforts of leaders in the education, gender, and HIV and AIDS communities. A panel featuring Geeta Rao Gupta, from the International Center for Research on Women (ICRW), Charles Abani, from the Global Campaign for Education (GCE), Rima Salah, from UNICEF, and Amete Ruf Hussen, from the Ethiopia AIDS Awareness Clubs will address the root causes of the feminization of the HIV epidemic, the status of girls’ education and its impact on HIV and AIDS, and actions needed at the international, regional, country and community level to remove barriers to girls’ education and prevent the further spread of HIV. Moderators for the session include Jeanette Kagame, Rwanda’s First Lady, and Josée Verner, Canada’s Minister of International Cooperation.
The UNAIDS IATT on Education was created in 2002 to support accelerated and improved education sector responses to HIV and AIDS. It is convened by UNESCO.
Launched in October 2005, the UNITE FOR CHILDREN UNITE AGAINST AIDS Campaign is a UNICEF-led partnership that provides a child-focused framework of nationally owned programmes incorporating specific targets for 2010 and concentrating on the ‘Four Ps’: Prevent mother-to-child transmission of HIV. Provide paediatric treatment. Prevent infection among adolescents and young people. Protect support for children affected by HIV/AIDS. Girls’ Education and gender equality are essential components in HIV prevention, and is integrally linked to this Campaign.
CIDA – the Canadian International Development Agency – is a world leader in child-centred and girl-friendly education. Health is also a priority for CIDA, and the fight against HIV/AIDS is a major part of the agency’s efforts.
During the XVI International AIDS Conference in Toronto the UNAIDS IATT on Education will launch Review of the Evidence: Girls' Education and HIV Prevention, a CD-ROM containing more than 100 recent resources produced by members of the IATT on Education and other leaders in the education, gender and HIV/AIDS communities.