CFAR Faith and Spirituality Research Collaborative (CFSRC) summer webinar series
Tuesday, May 19, 2020 11 a.m. CT

The session will be livestreamed on the UAB School of Public Health’s Facebook Page.

This panel looks at the way that the knowledge and experiences of those individuals and communities most affected by HIV serve as the essential foundation for a scientifically sound, community focused, and sustainable HIV response.  At times, many medical and public health researchers have assumed a kind of expert knowledge that supersedes community wisdom and efforts to establish and nurture strong community partnerships are relegated to the function of an advisory board.  We have learned hard lessons to ensure that sound HIV prevention, treatment, and support initiatives are informed by the priorities and insights of communities most affected.

For faith-based initiatives, however, this issue remains complex.  Often, religious leaders are identified as experts who talk about the lives of women, gay men, trans folk, and people of color  (the communities disproportionately impacted by HIV in the southeastern US). However, women, gay men, trans folk, and people of color themselves are rarely asked to lead faith-based HIV initiatives but are relegated to an advisory role (if invited to participate at all).

This panel will discuss how members of the communities most affected by HIV can assume leadership in faith-based HIV initiatives carried out by HIV researchers and how the religious and spiritual practices of these communities can inform such initiatives.  Drawing on the idea that the knowledge and experiences of those most affected by an event should inform a public health response, the panel will also discuss how community knowledge is essential for a sound response to COVID-19, both in the United States and globally.


For more information, contact:

Robin Lanzi, PhD, MPH, Co-Director
Edward Jackson, Community Engagement Programs Manager
UAB CFAR Behavioral and Community Sciences Core