UNAIDS asks youth to show the way
On Thursday, Her Royal Highness The Crown Princess attended meetings with the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) and received an update on the programmes pioneering activities to involve youth in the fight against AIDS.
For several years Crown Princess Mette-Marit has been strongly committed to strengthening the role of youth in the global AIDS effort. Through her involvement in UNAIDS, she has played an active role in advancing the organisations work in this area.
The efforts have yielded results. On Thursday, the Crown Princess held talks with UNAIDS personnel in Geneva on CrowdOutAIDS, a strategy for collaboration with a new generation of leaders in the AIDS response, which has been discussed online and offline over a five-week period and which will culminate in a new UNAIDS strategy for youth.
For five weeks, 5 000 young people from all across the world have taken part in both online and offline working groups to give their input on the AIDS effort, especially on how youth can best be involved. HIV is a young persons epidemic, in the sense that 40 per cent of all new cases occur in people under 24 years of age. This is why this age group can and must help to find solutions to the problem.
During Thursdays meetings, Crown Princess Mette-Marit and UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibé participated in online discussions with members of the working groups based in Canada and Nigeria. Over the next two weeks a committee comprised of ten young people from different countries will draw up a draft of the new strategy based on the many excellent suggestions thus far received regarding how to move forward.
As Mr Sidibé said: This is a great opportunity to make a change in the world.
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