Engagement with young people
An estimated 2.1 million adolescents (10-19 years) were living with HIV in 2012 in low- and middle-income countries. Young people are at the very centre of the epidemic. In some parts of the world, and in some marginalized sub-groups, the most frequent mode of HIV transmission among these young people is unsafe injecting drug use and unsafe sexual intercourse.
Lack of awareness about how HIV is spread and lack of access to appropriate HIV prevention services contribute to the spread of HIV among these most at-risk groups of young people.
UNODC encourages the involvement of young people in the development and implementation of youth friendly HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment and care services. As the convening agency within the UNAIDS family for HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment, care and support among people who use drugs and people in prisons, UNODC, together with other UN agencies and civil society partners, supports the development of youth-friendly HIV/AIDS services that are evidence-informed and tailored to meet the specific needs of the most-at-risk young people, such as those who inject drugs and juvenile prisoners.