An innovative and effective HIV/AIDS prevention
program that is helping Africa combat the virus's spread
will now be used to help turn around Haiti's HIV/AIDS
epidemic, thanks to a grant from the Pfizer Foundation.
Pfizer awarded a grant to the Johns Hopkins
Bloomberg School of Public
Health / Center for
Communication Programs to translate and make culturally
appropriate the successful Journey of Hope kit, which is a
practical and participatory life-skills tool that promotes
culturally acceptable dialogue about HIV/AIDS and
In addition to Haiti and Ghana, Journey of Hope, which
was developed by a priest in Tanzania, is being considered
for adaptation in Ethiopia and Uganda. The U.S. Agency for
International Development supports the Journey of Hope
project in Ghana.
Haiti has one of the worst HIV prevalence rates in
Latin America and the Caribbean with nearly 5 percent of
the general population infected. It is estimated that 85
percent of HIV-positive adults in the Caribbean live in
either Haiti or the Dominican Republic. Haiti also faces
high rates of unemployment, political instability and a
lack of health care coverage.
The Journey of Hope kit uses the concept of a rising
flood to illustrate the HIV/AIDS pandemic. By boarding a
"prevention boat" — symbolizing either abstinence,
faithfulness or condom use — individuals can survive
the flood. The kit is used to mobilize a network of
community- and faith-based organizations in highly
participatory and entertaining ways.
Beginning this month, CCP plans to translate the
Journey of Hope kit into Haitian Creole and make other
changes as recommended by a broad group of government
agencies and nongovernmental organizations. CCP will then
select five Haitian organizations to receive training on
using the kit. Those organizations will train about 200
community-based outreach workers, including religious and
youth leaders involved in HIV/AIDS activities.