I-Kiribati youth perceptions of HIV/AIDS and related risk behaviors Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/np193d20v

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  • The Republic of Kiribati is one of the last countries to face the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the Pacific. First appearing in the region in 1982, HIV/AIDS was recognized as a national concern during the late 90s. Partnering with the National AIDS Committee, research was conducted using qualitative and quantitative methods which included focus groups, surveys, personal interviews and quasi experiments. These methods were used to explore population and individual perceptions and behaviors related to HIV/AIDS. Once perceptions and behaviors were understood, HIV/AIDS was placed in a broader historical and social context. Placing the illness in these contexts, I examined how history and social environments influenced the spread of the virus. Focusing on youth, research exposed complex social structures which produced opportunities for varying levels of stigma, economic development, migration, education and modernity, all contributing to a systematic promotion and prevention of the spread of HI V/AIDS. Conclusions showed that gender roles, modernity, educational and economic opportunity, overpopulation, religious beliefs and limited resources contributed to greater amounts of high risk behaviors taken by individuals. Conversely, gender roles, religious beliefs, and modernity also assisted in the prevention of transmission.
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