| > TVET Issues: TVET and HIV/Aids
-2004-11-22 2:31 pm
TVET and HIV/Aids
The HIV/AIDS pandemic is a development disaster. Not only is it decimating whole populations, it also attacks the very institutions most needed to prevent the spread of the epidemic itself. HIV/AIDS is threatening to wipe out decades of investments in education and in human resource development.
| Particularly affected are large parts of Sub-Saharan Africa and the Caribbean, but the pandemic is also expanding in other regions of the world, with numbers of new infections growing most rapidly in Eastern Europe and Asia. It mainly affects the poor and the uneducated, primarily young adults, particularly women. But HIV/AIDS also heavily affects the skilled, the trained and the educated – that is the groups most vital for development. The high rate of disease and death among education personnel, health workers and other trained professionals will make replacements increasingly hard to find. Since there is no cure or vaccine yet, prevention is the most important way to combat HIV/AIDS.
With regard to TVET, HIV/AIDS affects:
- The demand for TVET: reduced enrolments through death and illness of students, absenteeism related to care for infected relatives, the need to substitute for a deceased income generating family member, that is having to work instead of going to school, etc.
- The supply of TVET: impact on teaching and other education personnel and resources
- The quality of TVET: by diverting resources and through absenteeism of staff and learners
HIV/AIDS also is a major threat to the world of work as it affects the most productive segment of the labour force. It leads to
- Reduced earnings
- Increase of labour costs
- Decline of productivity
- Loss of skills and experience
- Erosion of rights at work (discrimination and stigmatization of infected co-workers etc.)
The role of UNESCO
Within the UN system, UNESCO is the convening agency for HIV/AIDS and Education.
“UNESCO’s strategy is to place special emphasis on prevention of HIV/AIDS with and for education. By HIV/AIDS prevention education, UNESCO means offering learning opportunities for all to develop the knowledge, skills, competencies, values and attitudes that will limit the transmission and impact of the pandemic, including through access to care and counselling and education for treatment. UNESCO also means, through improved prevention and planning, to limit the impact of HIV/AIDS on the education sector, thereby preserving the core functions of the education systems.”
(UNESCO’s Strategy for HIV/AIDS Prevention Education, 2004, p. 20; http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0013/001345/134572e.pdf )
Furthermore, the governments, organizations, agencies, groups and associations represented at the World Education Forum 2000 in Dakar, Senegal, pledged themselves to “ …implement as a matter of urgency education programmes and actions to combat the HIV/AIDS pandemic” (Dakar Framework of Action 2000; www.unesco.org/education/efa/ed_for_all/framework.shtml), as part of the Education for All process.
HIV/AIDS has a tremendous impact on the education and training systems and the labour force. Therefore, the TVET systems of those countries most affected by the pandemic need to be adapted in order to address these problems. Within this context, the UNESCO-UNEVOC International Centre is developing “TVET and HIV/AIDS” into one of its areas of work and aims to address the HIV/AIDS problematic through its activities which emphasise best and innovative practices to strengthen and upgrade TVET in UNESCO Member States.
The Southern African Initiative LLWF
Within the framework of the initiative “Learning for Life, Work and the Future: Stimulating Reform in Southern Africa through Subregional Cooperation” a project proposal on “HIV/AIDS in TVET staff development” has been developed. Further information can be found at
UNESCO’s Action against HIV/AIDS
The ILO Programme on HIV/AIDS and the World of Work
Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS – UNAIDS
The Global Business Coalition on HIV/AIDS – Leading the business fight against HIV/AIDS
International AIDS Economics Network (IAEN) – The economics of HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment Publications on Workplace Education
List of UNESCO HIV/AIDS Clearinghouses:
The HIV/AIDS Impact on Education Clearinghouse (Institute for Educational Planning)
An interactive clearinghouse for collecting and disseminating documentation on HIV/AIDS and its impact on education.
The International Clearinghouse on Curriculum for HIV/AIDS Preventive Education (International Bureau of Education)
A global clearinghouse to collect, assess and disseminate curriculum materials and approaches for HIV/AIDS prevention.
The HIV/AIDS Clearinghouse (UNESCO Bangkok)
A regional clearinghouse aimed at collecting, processing, repackaging and disseminating information and materials on HIV/AIDS preventive education in Asia and the Pacific.
The Regional HIV/AIDS Clearinghouse on Preventive Education (UNESCO Dakar)
A bibliographic database of the latest documents to address the information needs of those working in the field of HIV/AIDS and education in Sub-Saharan Africa.
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