NHCOA is Acting Against AIDS by bringing prevention & awareness to Hispanic older adults, families & caregivers through the PACT partnership.
It is known that HIV/AIDS impacts Hispanics and other diverse communities disproportionately. However, one segment of the population that is often overlooked or neglected when conducting HIV awareness campaigns are Hispanic older adults and their caregivers.
Moreover, in recent years we have experienced an increase in HIV/AIDS infections among the Latino aging population, and older adults in general. It is estimated that one-quarter of people living with HIV are 50 years and older, which is up from 17% in previous years.
That is why the National Hispanic Council on Aging (NHCOA), the leading national organization working to improve the lives of Hispanic older adults, their families, and caregivers, has partnered with the CDC and ASPIRA in their Partnering and Communicating Together to Act Against AIDS (PACT) initiative to focus on HIV/AIDS education and prevention efforts within the Hispanic community that directly target a hardly reached population: Latino seniors, families, and caregivers.
NHCOA uses its Hispanic Aging Network (HAN), a national group of local community-based organizations that provide direct services and programs for Latino seniors and families, to help break through the stigma existent within the Latino community, as well as dispel myths and misconceptions, including the belief that HIV/AIDS only affects small fringe populations.
Given that HAN members are highly trusted in their local communities, NHCOA leverages their influence by creating a pipeline of educational and promotional material created for Latino seniors.
These materials, which are crafted in a linguistically, culturally and age-appropriate manner, are designed to empower Hispanic older adults to spread the HIV prevention message to families and youth by capitalizing on the high level of respect and regard they have within the community.
Thanks to the PACT partnership, NHCOA is able to reach a population that hasn’t been traditionally targeted in HIV prevention and awareness campaigns.