On Wednesday, February 5th, students from the Sustainable Democracy Project presented their knowledge about HIV and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs) as well as sexual health resources in the community to the entire Pedro Albizu Campos High School student body. For the last several months, the students have been working directly with teacher Elizabeth Hoffman and Vida/SIDA’s staff, Ricardo Jimenez and Alex Frye, researching sexual health issues relevant to the youth at the high school and developing a presentation to share their knowledge with their classmates. The students discussed the risks, symptoms, and available resources for HIV/STIs; demonstrated the correct way to use a condom; and presented the history of Vida/SIDA and its importance to the community.
The presentation was well received. Students asked questions regarding the issues that most matter to them and had those questions answered by the student presenters. Everyone received free condom packages with lube and information about where to get tested. And a group of student left directly for the event to take part in Vida/SIDA’s testing services.
The Sustainable Democracy Project is a part of the PACHS senior portfolios that all students must complete before graduation. Students are tasked with the responsibility of working with a local non-profit organization to solve a community issue through survey research and an action project. The students’ working with Vida/SIDA have had to help answer the question “how can we engage more youth to access HIV/STI testing and counseling. In the coming months, they will conduct a post-survey to investigate how successful their event was.
Students involved in this project are Elena Naranjo, Javier Rodriguez, Jacqueline Martinez, Briana Gomez, Deeqwan Collins, Jamilex Roldan, Jocelyne Monterroso, Lisa Mendez, Shantia Jackson, and Mariah Rivera.