One of the six strategic priority areas outlined in the CrowdOutAIDS outcome document was for UNAIDS to ensure full youth participation in the AIDS response at the country, regional, and global level by 2015.
Specifically key action 2.2 calls for the establishment of a youth reference group for the UNAIDS Secretariat. The recommendation reads:
A youth reference group should be established to inform the UNAIDS Secretariat’s policy and programmes with young people. The reference group should also engage in and coordinate advocacy efforts at the global level to remove the social and legal barriers that block young people’s access to HIV-related services. It should be regionally and gender balanced, and representatives from young key populations at higher risk and young people living with HIV should be encouraged to apply. Members should be selected on a rotating basis. Clear selection criteria should be defined to ensure that the reference group truly represents the perspectives of a diverse youth constituency. Best practices of youth advisory boards, reference groups, and similar bodies should inform the set up of this group to ensure that common pitfalls are avoided and real representation and influence are achieved. The reference group should meet virtually on a regular basis, and a support structure to ensure capacity-building should be developed.
The UNAIDS Secretariat will announce the UNAIDS Youth Advisory Forum in May, 2013.
If you are interested in joining the working group developing the proposal, sign up below.