Meet the Balinese high school student groups who are changing the way people think about HIV and AIDS in Bali.
Awareness in Bali
Bali Children’s Project has been working with schools in Bali to address a serious problem – a huge increase in HIV and AIDS rates.
In 2013, Bali had 12,145 confirmed cases of HIV and AIDS. In 2018, the figure was 27,225. With heterosexual males at highest risk, it’s never been more important to provide preventative education to students.
Starting through humble village workshops, Bali Children’s Project’s Sex Education Program now visits 55 schools each year, delivering trademark Sexual Health workshops to over 10,000 students.
But as hard as the team worked, we could never hope to reach the 1,000+ students in each school. Directly educating 55,000 students would be a huge task! But that is where student health groups come in.
Student Health Groups
Known as “KSPAN”, a requirement of schools in Bali is to have a student group to help address drugs and disease. Although the groups are mandatory in most schools, many of these groups lack the support to really impact their schools and wider communities.
Seeing the student health groups unable to really make an impact, we sensed a great opportunity. If we could train these groups to become more effective, we could reach tens of thousands more teenagers with life saving information.
Our team set up a new structure for groups, whereby each student health group was assigned a Bali Children’s Project mentor. The groups are challenged to create their own strategies on how to educate their peers and communities.
Delivering the Goods
Backed up with supplies, booklets and even a mobile web application, these student health groups are given all the tools they need to create community awareness.
Together, the groups help Bali Children’s Project to deliver sexual education workshops in their schools, while also creating their own ideas.
The change in student health groups has been incredible. From very little activity, groups have grown inspired and delivered their own activities. From giving out HIV and AIDS awareness leaflets in their communities, to running their own poster competitions, these youngsters are driving a new wave of awareness in Bali that will save lives.
The groups are encouraged to show their progress through their own Instagram accounts, all culminating in an end-of-year ceremony where the top student groups will be recognised.
It’s My Life
Bali Children’s Project’s Sex Education team works all year round to help schools and student groups disseminate awareness about HIV and AIDS. A lack of understanding about drugs and sexual activity has lead to a huge outbreak of disease in youngsters.
Fighting this with proactive education is key to stopping this spread. When teenagers are properly informed, they can make reasoned decisions about their lives.
As the old saying goes, an ounce of prevention is worth more than the cure.
The 2020 program has been kindly funded by donations from the Mel Wolf Foundation, Three Monkeys Cafes, Lucky Number 9, COMO Shambala, Bobbi and Grant & Sonia.
The continued success of this program depends on funding. If you’d like to support this program in 2020 and onwards, please get in touch.