William Rashidi

Rashidi is the Director of Equality Triangle, managing a key populations treatment facility in Delta State, Nigeria. He’s also a steering committee member of the Open House for Health and Human Rights, a key population network. He is an alumnus of the International Human Rights and LGBT Program at the Swedish Federation for Sexuality Education, the MenEngage Africa Training Initiative and the International Human Rights Training Programme, Canada. In addition, William is an alumnus of the Carrington Youth Fellowship Initiative and a Tony Elumelu Entrepreneur.

Fellowship Focus
Rashidi translated Nigeria’s PrEP guidelines to the real world by creating demand for PrEP within the LGBTQ+ communities in Abuja and Lagos and through outreach to the media. Specifically, he organized community dialogues that supported a sustainable forum, and he cultivated relationships with journalists to facilitate consistent and accurate media coverage.

In Their Own Words
Young leaders working in the field of HIV prevention and treatment are changing the landscape with advocacy for prevention choices, and this includes PrEP in the near future. I see the National Agency for the Control of AIDS (NACA) coming up with a national roadmap on PrEP availability and accessibility in the country.

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David Ita

David is a community HIV prevention advocate, trained by NHVMAS, with 7 years of experience working with vulnerable communities in Nigeria. He started as a peer educator and rose up the ranks to become the programme officer for Action for Community Development. David worked with orphans and vulnerable children in the Evbuotubu community in Edo State to ensure there was access to adequate information about safer sex practices. He also worked with women living with HIV to help prevent vertical HIV transmission in the Okhukugbo community. David was a monitoring and evaluation officer for Journalists Against AIDS in 2018. His work with NHVMAS reiterated his passion for promoting adolescent sexual reproductive health and rights in Nigeria.

Why I Want to Advocate for HIV Prevention in 2019, and What I Plan to Do
Due to the prevalence of HIV among adolescents in Nigeria, it is imperative for them to be adequately informed about comprehensive sexual education and have access to HIV and sexual reproductive health services. Currently, there isn’t enough focus on HIV prevention in Nigeria. I aim to integrate HIV prevention and sexual and reproductive health (SRH) education in Lagos State, advocate for policy lowering the age of consent for access to services while building a coalition of informed youth to sustain HIV prevention mobilization.

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Josephine Aseme

Josephine’s advocacy for PrEP rollout in key populations is exemplary; her accomplishments speak to her drive, savvy and grit. As an oral PrEP-taking sex worker and founder of Greater Women Initiative for Health and Rights, she has taken the helm, steering Nigeria’s KP community to accelerate access to HIV prevention.

For example, she trained almost 300 KP champions across select districts in peer-to-peer PrEP education and was able to chart an increase of over 23,000 PrEP referrals as a result. She successfully worked with the Ministry of Health and her host Heartland Alliance to secure PrEP inclusion in the National Consolidated Service Delivery Guidelines on HIV and STIs for Key Populations, in Nigeria’s National HIV/AIDS Prevention Plan, and in Heartland Alliance’s Peer Educators’ Manual, a nationally recognized compendium. And, as a KP representative to PEPFAR’s country planning, she convinced her peers as well as implementers to add language on the Dapivirine Vaginal Ring and cabotegravir injectables to Nigeria’s country operating plan in 2021.

End of Project Summary Video

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Amaka Enemo

Amaka is a sex worker and HIV activist, as Coordinator of the Nigeria Sex Workers Association and co-chair of Key Affected Populations in Nigeria. She is active in her country’s Global Fund process, where she helped to draft its Concept Note. She has a degree in political science from Delta State University, Abraka.

Why I want to advocate for HIV prevention in 2016:
Being a part of the sex worker community, I notice that most of the members are HIV positive. I really want something to reduce the spread of HIV. PrEP and microbicides, as part of the prevention package, could do a whole lot of good for my community considering the risk associated with our work.

Taiwo Oyelakin

Taiwo was tragically killed in an accident in 2014. He was an advocate for the rights of young people living with and affected by HIV/AIDS with a special focus on the rights and dignity of those who are most marginalized. He provided technical support in the formation of the first network of young people living with HIV (YPLHIV network in Nigeria, APYIN). He also helped in the founding of Youths and Adolescents Network on Population and Development in Africa (AFRIYAN) and the Network of Young People Living with HIV in Africa (AY+N). Taiwo was also the co-chair of the Global Network of people living with HIV Y+ Leadership Initiative.

Fellowship Focus
Taiwo’s advocacy focused on optimizing the benefits of ARVs for both treatment and prevention and on ensuring that global treatment plans support and recognize individual human rights of PLHIV, including mothers considering Option B+. Taiwo was also among the first advocates to engage key stakeholders around the rollout of PrEP in Nigeria.

In Their Own Words
The successes we’ve seen over the last few years, including approval of Truvada for PrEP, could be game-changers in turning the tide against AIDS. I believe we can beat the disease, we can win this fight and we just have to keep at it, steadily, persistently today, tomorrow, every day until we get to zero.

Nigerian National Agency for the Control of AIDS

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Site(s) – Nigeria