The SEYPA Program (Combating Social Exclusion of Young People Affected by HIV/AIDS) was initiated by the European Forum on HIV/AIDS, Children, Young People and Families and ran by Romania Angel Appeal.

Period of implementation: January 2003 – December 2004;

Sponsor: GlaxoSmithKline;

Objective: to consult young people affected by HIV/AIDS across five European countries (Romania, Italy, Spain, Portugal and Russia), thus identifying ways to reduce social exclusion.

Project beneficiaries: children and young people living with HIV/AIDS from European countries subject to stigma and discrimination, as well as their respective families.

Project description:

According to the definition, social exclusion occurs when people or groups decide consciously or unconsciously to put up barriers, preventing others from full and equal participation, leading to loss of rights, loss of power, lack of integration into society, affecting the ability to live fully.

With this definition as starting point, SEYPA was a project developed in 5 countries, with the purpose to consult young people living with HIV/AIDS in relevant matters to them as well as to involve them in identifying solutions that would be later promoted in and out of the project network.

During the 2 years of implementation, SEYPA included in the consultation process as many young people as possible from Romania, Russia, Spain, Portugal and Italy, through the 5 organizations partners in the project:

  • EveryChild – Russia
  • ACTUA (Asociacion de Personas que Vivimos con VIH/SIDA) – Spain
  • AJPAS (Associacao de Jovens Promotores da Amadora Saudavel) – Portugal
  • CARAP-ONLUS (Comitato Assistenza Ricerca AIDS Pediatrico) – Italy
  • lead agency: European Forum on HIV/AIDS, Children, Young People and Families – United Kingdom
  • coordination unit: Romanian Angel Appeal

The results of this consultation process (of young people by young people) were later used to develop toolkits to educate organizations and individuals with regard to relevant youth problems and ways of addressing them.

Project activities:

  • research and fieldwork conducted by children and young people in order to identify and address gaps in public and private services as well as in HIV/AIDS related social and medical policies
  • the group coordinators from in each of the five countries brought together young people in order to identify, address and promote policies and programs to minimize social exclusion;
  • the findings of the youth-led field activities were be used to design and develop a set of pan-European toolkits to disseminate lessons learned, experiences and technical skills acquired in order to minimize social exclusion, thereby improving the quality of lives of children and young people living with HIV/AIDS;
  • several national and international workshops and conferences were organized in order to disseminate the project results, to promote specific action and to mobilize existing resources to fight and reduce discrimination and marginalization of people living with HIV/AIDS;

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