Youth Space

Learning from the best: Incorporating new strategies to deliver information to YPLHIV

By Turip Raya

Testing HIV positive last year was a blow to my life. It didn’t seem real at first so I had to take several tests before I came to terms with the facts. All in all I knew that things happen for a reason and that having HIV would not stop me from achieving my goals. A week after diagnosis, I started ARV treatment: it was a very chaotic time with psychological disturbances and often gloomy. It was 2 months after that I met a peer support group that never got tired of providing support. From there I started volunteering and learned many things in organizations that are always related to HIV. I started learning HIV education and learned the information I had from friends and peers. Since then my life began to be meaningful and useful for the lives of many people.

Being selected to attend HIV2020 was a booster to the desire I have to build on my capacity to deliver HIV related information to the young people especially those that are experiencing living with HIV like me. It was also a great opportunity for me to associate with other young people especially young men who had been living with HIV longer than me and I learnt a lot from them. Amongst the several topics, I enjoyed: Usage of Delutogravia (DTG) and Efavirenz(EFZ), its risks and side effects especially during pregnancy. The panelists gave specifications and details on the efficacy of DTG and how important it is to keep monitoring the process in women of reproductive age.

In terms of data, I learnt that to service more communities, better data tabulation should be used to improve the efficiency of service delivery in healthcare systems. This can then advance the global health agenda and offer solutions like the Community Adolescent Treatment Supporters (CATS) model which includes: support for stable access to treatment, Family support, Peer support, Clinic visits, Home visits and support groups.

All in all, I am now applying the better and strengthened delivery of information to my peers and thankful for the opportunity that was availed by UNICEF and Y+ Global for me to understand these concepts better and learn better.

For all my friends around the world, let us rise together and fight the stigma and discrimination against young people living with HIV.