The Amsterdam Youth Force represents youth perspectives during the AIDS 2018 conference.
We aim to be the driving force behind an inclusive and meaningful youth programme that will represent young voices from around the world. As part of the Global Village, youth gets to set its own programming which demonstrates the work and struggles of young people worldwide.
Amsterdam | 1 pm – 4 pm UTC+02
We are having our general meeting with updates on all the Working Groups. Feel free to join in Person or virtually.
The main goals of the Conference focus around discussing the measures for eliminating HIV infection and other socially significant diseases in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, presenting high-performance programs and exchanging experience among scientists, experts, policy makers, healthcare professionals and public figures in relation to the best HIV response strategies.
We together with the Y+ Network are organizing the Youth Pre-Conference from 20th to the 22nd of July 2018 in the run-up to the International AIDS Conference. The aim is to empower young people by providing a stage for youth across borders to speak, teach and learn the necessary skills; relax without asking permission and therefore claiming their own space and power. You want to be part of it? Registration is open!
Our mission: We want to structurally de-stigmatise HIV & AIDS and contribute to the prevention of new (co-) infections by empowering youth. We will do this by mobilising young people, strengthening their voices and aim them in the right direction so that the youth’s perspective can’t be ignored. One of the spotlights of the AIDS 2018 Conference is the Eastern European and Central Asia (EECA) region due to the alarming increase of new HIV infections. The Amsterdam Youth Force area will foster a special relationship with this region.
“One in 8 people living with HIV report having faced discrimination in health care settings. We must treat people equally with respect and dignity”, Michel Sidibe the executive director of UNAIDS was reported saying at the UNAIDS zero-discrimination panel discussion on the 1st March.
The previous blog ‘Treatment of HIV/AIDS’ already outlined the types of antiretroviral medications available and briefly mentioned the possible risks of ART. The WHO recommends commencement of antiretroviral therapy for all seropositive individuals regardless of CD4 count and viral load.
My name is Saidy Brown, I am a 23 year old lady who is living with HIV. I found out that I was HIV positive when I was 14 years old, and in grade ten (10). It was around June (I can't really remember the exact date), it was a few days prior to youth day, and there was a youth day event my school was invited to. I was one of the learners that were chosen to go to that event to represent the school.
Iris is a gender & sexuality specialist that hopes to connect people across their differences. She works for equal rights and opportunities for people from different backgrounds, focusing on sexual and reproductive health and rights in particular. Her experience is mostly based in multicultural, international settings, doing qualitative research, project management and/or communication. In all those different roles she always keeps her focus on the specific vulnerabilities of the bodily autonomy of women and girls.
Born and raised in Caracas, Venezuela Tomás is a lawyer specialized in International Law and Development Studies. Program Officer for the "HIV and Human Rights" Program of Hivos, in The Netherlands. Tomás provides technical, strategic and administrative support to 16 human rights-based HIV prevention and treatment projects in Latin America, Africa and South East Asia. These projects are implemented in approx. 26 countries through more than 50 local community based organizations. He firmly believes that the HIV response will not meet the global targets set for 2030 if we do not address the underlying drivers of the epidemic - poverty and inequality, harmful gender norms, gender inequality, and all forms of discrimination and criminalization – that limit the basic human rights of Key Populations.
Mark started his work in Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) in 2012 by organizing Comprehensive Sexuality Education for primary schools. In 2016 this led to him organizing a European student conference on this topic. Currently, Mark works as a medical doctor and sub-investigator for two PrEP studies at the Department of Infectious Diseases of the Amsterdam Public Health Service.
At the start of medical school, Lotte joined a sexuality education project for primary schools with IFMSA-NL. After being active in this project and other SRHR-related projects for three years she became the first Dutch Youth Ambassador for SRHR. In this role she gained experience with SRHR, HIV/Aids and meaningful youth participation at national and international level. Currently she is an advocate with CHOICE for Youth and Sexuality, chairs the local chapter of Universities Allied for Essential Medicines and does clinical internships in various hospitals around Amsterdam.
Evdokia is a sexual and reproductive rights activist from Russia, who is focusing on the topic of HIV related stigma in her research and advocacy practices. During her teenage years Evdokia has joined local youth organization that was using theater for the prevention of HIV in the Russian community. This topic has strengthen her interest in the research she has conducted on the topic of HIV stigma (for her BA in Russia) and theater as a mean of empowerment of people living with HIV (participatory action research for her MA in the USA). She was serving as a staff member of the Russian NGO since 2011 in her home city Samara and as an international advocate for sexual and reproductive Rights for the international human rights organization Youth Coalition for Sexual and Reproductive Rights since 2014. Evdokia is specifically interested in the ways creative approaches and art may be used in the practices of activism, advocacy, and community work.
Liselotte Zoetmulder (Lilo) is the AIDS 2018 Project Manager for the International AIDS Society, one of the organizers of the 22nd International AIDS Conference in Amsterdam in July 2018. Having lived and worked in the Netherlands, US, Mexico, Australia and Switzerland, she has diverse experience in working at the community level with vulnerable and marginalised communities, as well on high-level lobbying and advocacy. With a background in life sciences and political science, Liselotte is particularly passionate about improving the health of key populations (with a core focus on women and girls), and working in partnership with communities to identify and address their own needs.
With a background in law, economics and consulting, Edward is a passionate connector who works hard to connect community (key populations), young scientists, activists and young leadership. With a Liberal Arts and Science Bachelor, a Masters in European Law and a Masters in Law & Economics, Edward is now working on his Bachelors in Dutch Law at the University of Amsterdam. Edward is currently based in Amsterdam.
Always known as curious and opinionated, Anna is an advocate for the power of social change. Studying anthropology and politics at Maynooth University in Ireland instilled a deep belief that actors have the capacity to influence society even in minute ways. Anna identifies as a feminist and a sex positive activist. An MSc in Social Policy and Social Interventions led her to Utrecht where she currently resides. Her research interests lie in sex workers rights, discourse analysis and socio-cultural aspects of HIV.
Ubongabasi is an Intern with the Amsterdam Youth Force. She is a Lawyer and currently studies for a Master’s in Development Studies (Human Rights, Gender and Conflict Studies, Social Justice Perspective) at the International Institute of Social Studies, The Hague. She has practiced law in Nigeria and has also worked as a volunteer for different NGOs thereby gaining experience in the field of Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights. She is passionate about human rights, sexual and reproductive health rights and works to promote to realise them, especially for young people.
Originally from India, Yashaswini Prasad (Yasha) is a lawyer by education. On graduating from law school, she worked in grassroots education in India as a Teach For India Fellow for two years. Her work with the education sector in India sparked off her interest in Development and Governance. She is currently pursuing her Masters in Public Policy as a part of the Mundus MAPP Programme. She aspires to work in the field of policy, creating more inclusive institutions through reform in public infrastructure, education, health and urban development.
Liana is currently doing master in European Public Health in Maastricht, the Netherlands. Her major interest is the problem of access to medicines and universal health coverage particularly in the region of Eastern Europe and Central Asia. She is also part of an international student-led NGO Universities Allied for Essential Medicines (UAEM),where she takes an active role in advocacy work for access to medicines within Dutch government and academia.