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Are Faith-Based Organizations Assets or Hindrances for Adolescents Living with HIV? They Are Both

Sexual Health
John Blevins

This paper examines the myriad of public health, sociological, political, and theological issues that are at play when faith-based organizations (FBOs) provide HIV prevention, treatment, and support services to adolescents. It is a case study of these issues as they play out among adolescents living in informal settlements across Nairobi. This paper examines these issues in three sections: a background on the role of FBOs in coordinated, sustained responses to HIV; a description of the particular influence of religion on HIV prevention and sexual health programs for adolescents in Nairobi’s informal settlements living with HIV and receiving their health care from FBOs; and a discussion of the results of a series of workshops held with these adolescents to identify their specific needs and assess whether FBOs could adequately address them.