The United Nations Development Programme and Yahoo! China are working together to increase increase HIV/AIDS awareness among internet users in China.
This initiative follows closely upon the program initiated by Chinese State Council AIDS Working Committee Office and the International Labor Organization have jointly initiated a program in Beijing aim at preventing the spread of HIV/AIDS among migrant workers.
The internet has long been identified as a key platform to increase user's access to HIV awareness and prevention information. According to the China Internet Network Information Center, China has over 210 million internet users, with the average age being 25 years old and students accounting for 32.3 percent. Current internet based interventions consist of establishing websites and chat rooms. However, these mechanisms alone have been ineffective in providing key access to the majority of internet users. According to a recent study released by UNAIDS, some 83% of Internet users have never actively sought information on HIV/AIDS.
The partnership between UNDP and Yahoo aims to use search engines to provide a higher level and direct entry point to HIV/AIDS prevention information for users not directly searching for HIV/AIDS. By using search string technology, Yahoo will provide advertisement space with the key message: "Do you know about HIV and HIV Testing?" when the search topic is linked to over 20 high risk behaviors related key words such as sex, porn, and gay.
"UNDP continues to work with the private sector in creative ways to involve the private sector in the response to AIDS," stated Napoleon Navarro, UNDP deputy country director. "Working with Yahoo brings a wealth of experience and know how to develop innovative messages and utilize key distribution platforms to reach diverse population groups."
This partnership builds on UNDP's ongoing efforts to increase access to HIV/AIDS awareness information to millions of Chinese by working with commercial media and advertisement companies, government partners, production companies, people living with HIV/AIDS and UN partners. Over the past two years, these public private partnerships have led to the development and distribution of key anti stigma and safer sex messages via video advertisement platforms on buses, trains, and airports, and through billboards at university campuses and gas stations.