On April 21 and 22, 2017, the Pan Caribbean Partnership against HIV and AIDS will host a meeting of youth leaders from 19 Caribbean countries in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago. Those countries will include Antigua and Barbuda, Anguilla, British Virgin Islands, The Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, The Commonwealth of Dominica, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Jamaica, Grenada, Guyana, Montserrat, Saint Lucia, Suriname, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, and the Turks and Caicos Islands.
The focus will be to discuss the role of youth in the national and regional response to HIV and AIDS. Participants will formulate a framework for regional youth advocacy. Sexual health issues affecting young people and the barriers to accessing sexual health services will be discussed in-depth. The meeting will provide an update on the strategic directions required for ending the epidemic.
PANCAP Youth Advisor, Hon. Dr Astell Collins, explained that the meeting will be pivotal for creating a strategy for youth leaders to implement in responding to the range of challenges young people face with regard to sexual health and HIV/AIDS.
The meeting, funded by the Global Fund and PAHO, forms part of a wider intervention. The programme also includes youth advocacy training, facilitating youth leaders’ participation in high-level meetings to influence policy decisions affecting youth, and the development of a regional youth advocacy network. Such programme meetings will be held annually for the next 3 years.
PANCAP will provide a “Live” stream of the opening ceremony and other key presentations on Friday, April 21 via its Facebook page. PANCAP is a Caribbean regional partnership which was established on 14 February 2001. PANCAP provides a structured and unified approach to the Caribbean’s response to the HIV epidemic, coordinates the response through the Caribbean Regional Strategic Framework on HIV/AIDS to maximise efficient use of resources and increases impact, mobilises resources and builds partner capacity.