Young Women of Color HIV/AIDS Coalition

Award Recipients - 2011

Claire Simon, Jennifer Irwin & Tiffanie Patterson, Co-Founders

The Young Women of Color HIV/AIDS Coalition (YWCHAC) has brought attention to the rapidly rising HIV infection rates among women of color and created a dynamic network of organizations focused on HIV/AIDS prevention and education. YWCHAC is “an organization for, and of, young women of color that fosters their development in organizing and advocacy skills.”

Young women of color articulate their health needs and organize an annual health summit and “safer sex education parties” featuring music, dancing, HIV/AIDS prevention information, testing, and confidential counseling. Quarterly meetings for youth serving agencies and HIV/AIDS prevention programs raise awareness and in turn impact programming, policy recommendations, and funding priorities.

YWCHAC’s mapping project by zip codes shows that women of color continue to become HIV-infected at alarming rates. YWCHAC members meet with local officials and the New York City Department of Health to implement health education in the public schools.

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