Although disproportionately affected by HIV, adolescent girls and young women, particularly those living with HIV, are often the strongest advocates and leaders in the response. Ensuring they know their rights and have the skills and opportunities to claim them is crucial to removing barriers to life-saving HIV services, achieving gender equality, and ending AIDS as a public health threat by 2030.
The publication documents results, learnings, and impacts of the UN Women programme “Investing in Adolescent Girls' and Young Women’s Leadership and Voice in the HIV Response” implemented in 2021-2023 in partnership with the United States President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and with support from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and UNAIDS. The programme was implemented in 15 countries across sub-Saharan Africa where adolescent girls and young women experience some of the highest rates of HIV risk and infection globally.
From building feminist leadership capacities, including through mentorship of adolescent girls and young women for a more gender-transformative HIV response, towards creating safe spaces for adolescent girls, and inter-generational dialogue and feminist movement-building for better health, this report shares accomplishments, lessons learned, and powerful impact stories of young women leaders who are advocating for change in the HIV response.