Socially Apart Youth: Priorities for HIV Prevention
This chapter offers a preliminary analysis of the particular vulnerability to HIV infection of millions of children and young people who are out of, or beyond the reach of, formal schooling. It adopts a global perspective, examining the experience of what might be described as ‘socially apart youth’, a term that is used to remind us of the primary factor that exposes relatively distinct groups of young people to HIV infection. Street kids, children in difficult circumstances, marginalized youth, and many other expressions do not underline the common denominator among these young people. They are all outside the social system and lacking access to services and information. Whether a refugee, an abused child, a young person on the streets, or an adolescent in institutional care, these are children who are denied the human rights so eloquently described by Jonathan Mann and others (GAPC, 1993). Three main issues are examined: what health and health promotion means for socially apart young people; what it means to be young in developing countries; and how can we achieve the biggest possible impact at all levels reaching different youth communities as much as each unique child or adolescent.