The role of economic empowerment strategies in reducing HIV vulnerability among girls and young women

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International Center for Research on Women (ICRW)

As HIV prevalence continues to rise globally among girls and young women, the need to develop effective prevention and mitigation strategies for this population is urgent. This paper draws on the published and grey literature related to HIV and girls and young women, and economic empowerment programs among adult women, young women and girls to address the following key questions:

  • Why focus on girls? Why are girls and young women particularly vulnerable to HIV?  How does economic vulnerability intersect with gender inequality to exacerbate HIV risk and vulnerability?
  • What is economic empowerment? Through what pathways might economic empowerment contribute to HIV risk reduction among girls and young women?
  • To what extent are girls currently being reached by combined economic empowerment and HIV programs?

This paper provided the background for the meeting, Emerging Insights on Economic Empowerment and HIV Interventions for Girls and Young Women, convened by ICRW with support from the Nike Foundation.