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HIV Risk Reduction Research and Education Projects

Project Director: Jennifer Tiffany
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The Talking with Kids about HIV/AIDS Parent HIV Education Project

Principal Investigator: Jennifer Tiffany

The Talking with Kids about HIV/AIDS Parent HIV Education Project was developed by Cornell University in 1989 as a prevention education resource for parents and guardians. The project works to support parents, guardians and other adults to communicate accurate HIV-related information to children and teens in sensitive, age-appropriate, and developmentally appropriate ways. The goal of the project is to help save lives by reducing new HIV infections among young people. The project involves volunteer parent educators in delivering intensive, community-based workshops. The workshops include basic information on the HIV/AIDS epidemic and its impact, skills development in HIV risk assessment and risk reduction, and extensive parent-child communication activities. The Talking with Kids about HIV/AIDS Teaching Guide gives detailed descriptions of the workshop activities. Over 3,500 volunteer parent educators have reached over 100,000 people with learning activities, primarily through Cornell Cooperative Extension Associations in New York State. The Talking with Kids about HIV/AIDS curriculum is available in both English and Spanish.

The Complementary Strengths Research Project

Principal Investigators: John EckenrodeJennifer Tiffany

The Complementary Strengths Research Project was initiated in 2005 as a community-based participatory research (CBPR) project involving Cornell, government agencies, and community-based organizations receiving government support for providing after-school programs for adolescents in New York City. The overall goal of the study is to assess the extent to which active program participation can serve as a lever to promote adolescent sexual health, HIV risk reduction, and social connectedness. In the first phases of this project, we worked to develop a brief, plain-language, reliable scale that could facilitate research in the field as well as generate practical findings for programs seeking to assess, evaluate and improve practices related to youth participation. The project has conducted a pilot study supported by the Family Life Development Center, an exploratory study enabling us to validate our new program participation scale, a qualitative study examining youth and program staff views on enhancing program participation, and related program evaluation activities. We are now conducting a study aimed at developing a setting-based intervention to promote high quality youth program participation.

Past HIV Risk Reduction Projects

Project Director: Jennifer Tiffany

Past HIV risk reduction projects with youth have included providing technical support on conducting participatory action research to UNICEF’s What Every Adolescent has a Right to Know Initiative. Capacity, carrying out participatory research projects with rural youth in New York State, providing technical assistance to service providers, and working with Cornell University students involved in local and international HIV risk reduction activities.