Strengthening of HIV/AIDS Partnerships in Education (SHAPE) II
SHAPE II worked closely with Ghana's Ministry of Education, Science and Sports (MOESS), and the Ghana Education Service (GES) and 12 nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) to more effectively design, implement and monitor school-based peer education programs. With SHAPE's support, participating Ghanaian civil society organizations (CSOs) improved their peer education programs reaching primary, junior, and secondary school students in 252 schools in 11 ‘hotspot’ districts in 4 regions. The program facilitated partnerships between District School Health Education Program (SHEP) Coordinators and local CSOs to collaborate on the implementation of school-based peer education programs.
SHAPE II also supported pre-service and in-service teacher training in HIV prevention, so teachers can protect themselves from infection, and behave ethically with students and other teachers. In collaboration with GES, SHAPE developed a national HIV and AIDS curriculum, "Window of Hope,” and coordinated with the national exam board to develop an exam for the curriculum. Window of Hope provides basic knowledge about HIV, and uses adult education methodology to teach teacher trainees to communicate with each other—and ultimately their future students—around these critical issues. The curriculum features 13 units on HIV prevention and lifeskills (including stigma reduction and ethics) and 13 additional units of teaching methodology.
The combination of a robust peer education program with in-service teacher training creates an environment in schools where young people can receive accurate information from multiple sources in a safe environment, equipping them with skills to make empowered choices about their sexual health.
- Reach students, teachers and parents with information necessary to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS and mitigate its impact on the education sector.
- Collaboration with the GES on development of Window of Hope curriculum as an “examinable” subject for teacher trainees -continuous development of student leaders as peer educators who formed and led HIV/AIDS clubs
- Capacity building of CSOs to deliver quality peer education programming in schools through training, mentoring and small grants
- Creation of a cadre of teacher mentors in schools to support the HIV/AIDS clubs
- Non-formal and adult education methods used throughout teacher training curriculum and in peer education manuals
- "Window of Hope” was adopted as a fully examinable HIV prevention curriculum in Ghana in partnership with Ghana Education Service Teacher Education Division
- Strong collaboration developed between CBOs and District SHEP coordinators in peer education component
- All 38 teacher training colleges participated
- 252 schools reached with HIV prevention messages
- Partnership with private company Nestlé Ghana, Ltd. resulted in BCC campaign (posters, bumper stickers, etc)
- CSOs capacity strengthened to deliver HIV prevention beyond the LoP
- CSO capacity building and partnership with school officials (head teachers and principals) key to sustaining HIV prevention in community/school model
- Involvement of local and religious leaders (via CBOs) critical to uptake of messages
- Using evidence based decision making (SHAPE I surveys) and best practices
- On-going dialogue with all partners allowed for adequate planning and proactive troubleshooting
- Alliances and partnerships with the education sector, especially GES ownership of Window of Hope curriculum, institutionalize program.
- Participation of children in program strategy
- Challenging to measure real behavior change