The National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO) estimates that there are over 5.1 million people living with HIV and AIDS in India. Among new infections reported in 2006, 88 percent were reported in the reproductive age group (15–49 years). The virus is spreading rapidly among women, including married and monogamous women, and adolescent girls. Existing literature shows that women's vulnerability is compounded due to their gendered disadvantage in information access, literacy, and decision-making. This disadvantage is particularly acute in the case of married women in rural India. NACO has indicated the need to develop audience-appropriate strategies for communicating HIV-related information. To ensure that rural low- and neo-literate women are equipped with correct information about HIV and AIDS it is necessary to design communication strategies that are evidence-based, participatory, and take women's visual perceptions into account. As detailed in this brief, the Population Council and partners undertook a participatory communications project to develop visually appropriate communication materials on HIV and AIDS for married rural women.
Nidadavolu, Vijaya, Moumita Saha, and Vijaya Usha Rani. 2007. "Our stories: Women speak out against HIV and AIDS—An interactive communication package for rural low-literate women," Research update. New Delhi: Population Council.