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UNESCO: Culture, HIV & AIDS Program
Well-being, Education, Poverty
UNESCO's Culture, HIV and AIDS program works to support HIV and AIDS interventions and strategies which are grounded in and tailored to the social and cultural specificities of the target populations. For UNESCO, culture is understood from the anthropological perspective to be a set of distinctive spiritual, material, intellectual and emotional features of a society or social group, which encompasses, in addition to the arts and literature, lifestyles, ways of living together, value systems, traditions and beliefs. With this definition, the program advocates for 'culturally appropriate' approaches in response to the epidemic and, in acknowledgement of the severe limitations of prescribing a singular formula, stresses the need for multiple, context-specific behavioural and structural interventions. Understanding what motivates peoples’ behaviours, knowing how to address these motivations appropriately, and taking into consideration peoples’ cultures when developing programmes addressing HIV and AIDS are essential to changing behaviours and attitudes associated to HIV and AIDS.