NAPWA’s goal is to train HIV-positive young people from across the country in the life skills required for good health

The Positive Youth Institute consisted of three days of training that developed a national cadre of youth ambassadors from across the nation ages ranging from 18–24 who are living with HIV/AIDS that can bring the knowledge obtained through the course of the training back to their communities to:
 Build sustainable leadership among other community youth
 Increase engagement in HIV prevention awareness initiatives targeting youth
 Increase their ability to manage their individual mental, emotional, and physical health
 Reduce community experience resulting from HIV-related stigma
 Reduce the individual impact that HIV-related stigma has on their personal lives

The workshops run the gamut of social and medical issues, and have included in the past: public presentation; resume building; media spokesperson issues; creative arts; medical care and treatment, and body image. Workshops are taught by professionals in their respective fields.

All participants for the Positive Youth Leadership Development Institute will have a positive HIV diagnosis. Additionally, participants should have a basic understand of what HIV/AIDS is, how it is transmitted, and how it exists in the body. Participants should also have accepted and be comfortable talking about their serostatus either in a small group or on a one-on-one basis. Due to the sensitive information being shared during the institute, all youth participants will be asked to sign a confidentiality and privacy agreement.

Youth participants must also possess active listening and interpersonal communication skills. All youth participants must have respect for diversity, regardless of races, sex, national origin, religious affiliation, physical ability, sexual expression and practices, gender, and gender identity. Youth participants should be at a level where they are comfortable participating in discussions about their concerns with their HIV-positive diagnosis and how it has impacted various aspects of their lives. Finally, youth participants should be able to suspend personal judgment of other individual’s relationships and sexual behaviors and/or be able to manage their own discomfort. The ability will ensure that youth participants will be able to attend to the program content. NAPWA will do everything they can to accommodate special needs of youth participants and will request that all needs be disclosed at the time of registration.

1. Christopher Barnhill- Advisory Board Member

2. Raul Posas - Program Manager

3. Tony R Ray