Managers from a bank, superstore, hotel, and other businesses are volunteering to give HIV-related lectures in 40 Estonian schools throughout April.
Thirty-seven volunteers are participating in the third year of the initiative – “Businesses Against HIV.”
The professionals will share their knowledge about HIV, AIDS and sex education with 2,200 7th to 12th graders this month.
Although recent studies show that students are increasingly better informed about HIV and safe sex, there is still a significant amount of misconceptions about the disease among the youth. “The key factor in decreasing the risk of infection risk among the youth is consistent and high-quality sexual education in schools. We want to support schools and teachers with our initiative and show that every adult can contribute for a safer tomorrow,” said Keit Fomotshkin, an organizer on behalf of the Healthy Estonia Foundation.
According to a 2010 survey by the National Institute for Health Development, 10 percent of 14-year-olds and 50 percent of 16-year-olds in Estonia have had sex at least once. The study also found that 38 percent of 14 to 18-year-olds did not use condoms for casual sex. Twenty-one percent of 10 to 13-year-olds did not know what HIV is.