Ismarte sa kalye update
One of the more neglected segments of the population of the fight agaista AIDS has been the street-based sex workers (SBSWs). In comparison to sex workers who work our of bars and other establishments, SBSWs are exposed to higher leveles of violence and abuse. in 2012, the National Epidemiology Center placed the number of SBSWs in Quezon City from 563 to 1,206. These include men, women, and transgenders. Ages ranged from the teens and early 20's to above 30 years old. While the younger females usually had more clients, the older SBSWs were more skilled in negotiating fees with their customers. Access to clients were not simply confined to the streets but also included meet-ups in malls and other public places, referrals, as well as the internet.
It was under this setting that the Tropical Disease Foundation funded the project entitled the “Evaluation Of The Operationalization Of The Informal Network Mechanism For Street-Based Sex Workers In Relation To Human Immunodeficiency Virus (Hiv) And Other Sexually Transmitted Infection (Stis) Prevention Program In The Philippines Intervention For Street-Based Sex Workers” in coorperation with the Quezon Cith Health Department and headed by Dr. Jovanni Templonuevo, Principal Investigator. The intervention included psychological and medical assessments as well as preparation of the SBSWs, positive affirmation, and training and application. At the end of the research, a training curriculum was created and refined to help the beneficiaries deal with identifying, preventing and protecting himself or herself from possible danger, especially within intimate relationships. Aside from this, discussions on the concepts of earnings and savings were also included to guide the participants towards basic financial literacy.
By 2017, 4 out of 9 sex workers who were involved in the project have left the sex trade and were hired as peer educators for the QC Health Department. Four also graduated from high school through the Alternative Learning System implemented by the Department of Education.