Leveraging Online Technology for HIV Education for LGBT

Project: Research project

Project Details


According to CDC, in 2010 youth aged 13 to 24 made up 17% of the US population, but accounted for an estimated 26% (12,200) of all new HIV infections in the United States. Among youth, young gay and bisexual men accounted for 72% of new HIV infections. While comparable data on transgender populations is less available, CDC reports that the highest percentage of newly identified HIV-positive test results is among transgender people. Although high HIV incidence among youth populations can be attributed to a number of factors, such as poverty and access to healthcare, LGBT youth aren’t getting the information they need about HIV, especially in school-based sexual health education. They increasingly turn to the Internet for answers; in fact, a large survey of young MSM found the majority used the Internet to find HIV information, while another study found that LGBT youth were substantially more likely than their heterosexual peers to search online for sexual health information. Because of this context of the HIV epidemic and the dearth of offline information relevant to LGBT youth, The IMPACT LGBT Health and Development Program created our website as a resource for youth and is committed to sustaining and growing it. The site provides medically accurate, sex-positive, non-judgmental information that is easily accessible and written in a way that is understood by younger individuals. Nevertheless, the IMPACT Program website does not currently contain a page dedicated to HIV topics for LGBT youth, and much of the existing content may be dated or difficult to find without searching the site, creating barriers to access. Funding through DIFFA would allow for staff time and operating support that is critically needed to develop culturally relevant, HIV-related web content, thereby arming LGBT youth with the information and tools to make safe decisions about their health. During the one-year duration of this funding, we propose to conduct a gaps analysis of current web content; develop ten new HIV-specific pieces of content for LGBT youth, such as blogs, infographics, and videos to be housed on a new HIV web page; hold three Youth Advisory Committee meetings to inform the development of the project; and promote the online resources through a strategic web and social media dissemination plan.
Effective start/end date5/1/164/30/17


  • Design Industries Foundation Fighting AIDS/Chicago, Inc. (Check #3283)


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