Involvement of Peers and Target Group Representatives to Develop Advocacy Messages and IEC Materials (Azerbaijan)

world vision logoWell designed IEC (Information, Education and Communication) materials are one of the most effective tools for HIV/AIDS awareness raising. Cross Border Cooperation for HIV/AIDS Prevention and Impact Mitigation in Southern Caucasus and Russian Federation Project teams in all four participating countries are planning to design, print and distribute 2 sets of IEC materials on HIV/AIDS and migration during awareness raising campaigns and outreach events.
Project local partner in Azerbaijan (Struggle against AIDS Public Union) has established collaborative relationships with project target groups within mobile and most at risk populations (PLWHA, Sex Workers, most-at-risk youth and adolescents), which is a solid background for partnership in cooperation in various activities.
During the process of IEC material design, the project team decided to involve the target populations in brainstorming and discussions for generating creative ideas on material content and structure.
Several meetings with target groups were organized in the Local Partner office aiming to increase the target groups’ awareness on HIV and risky behavior, discussing their needs, problems and expectations, issues related to social environment and relevant advocacy directions and messages. During the meetings the attendants reviewed the IEC materials and made respective suggestions and recommendations. The participating individuals (representing various target groups) identified several problems linked to treatment, care and support service availability and accessibility. Local Partner put substantial efforts to ensure the participation of affected communities in developing miscellaneous policies and practices, e.g. prevention and advocacy messages.
Project local team in Azerbaijan is constantly working to enhance partnership relationships with the target communities and groups, contributing to visibility and sustainability of the project as well as community engagement and participation while assessing their needs and developing respective advocacy messages and other activities.