“Much like rural America itself, the road to effective HIV/STD prevention and control may be unpaved and winding. Yet, the moral obligation to develop and smooth this road is clearly evident. The challenges are inherently difficult and the available research and financial support are modest at best. Innovative, collaborative responses and solutions
are required to contain and reduce HIV and other STDs in rural locations.”
– from the RCAP publication,
Tearing Down Fences: HIV/STD Prevention in Rural America
Syringe Exchange in Indiana
Communities throughout Indiana are considering whether syringe exchange is appropriate for them, and if so, how they can begin the process. RCAP serves as the information portal for syringe exchange with links to a learning community, technical assistance and other resources.
- Learn about syringe exchange As communities consider syringe exchange, the first step is education about it, and about the need for this public health intervention in their local communities. Initial community level data about the need for syringe exchange provide Hepatitis C and supplemental data for each Indiana county.
- Convene partners to discuss the issues and options. The next step is to engage partners to share this information and to discuss opportunities. This involves convening conversations throughout the community with many partners who have an interest.
- Assess readiness for a syringe exchange in your community.
The Rural Center for AIDS/STD Prevention is pleased to announce a new online awareness community initiative, called Project CREATE (create rural education AIDS tailoring effort). This program has several features: (1) individuals can create their own posters tailed to their rural community, (2) individuals can participate in media-driven story telling in which they can share HIV/AIDS-related pictures, blogs, videos, and audio, and (3) individuals can find support and guidance through a custom-tailed forum with five distinct HIV/AIDS topics. This innovative program was developed by HIV/AIDS prevention specialists at the University of Kentucky and Indiana University. To access this program go to the RCAP website and click on the Project CREATE portal.
The process of developing Project CREATE and its features are described in a recently published manuscript: McGladrey M, Noar S, Crosby R, Young A, and Webb E. (2012). Creating Project CREATE: Lessons learned and best practices for developing web-based resources for public heath practitioners. American Journal of Health Education, 43, 341-348. (Click here for PDF).
National Network of Rural HIV/STD Prevention
This email listserv network, also called The Rural Network, consists of persons committed to advancing HIV/STD prevention in rural communities. Members of The Rural Network receive emails from RCAP announcing its publications, conferences, and other activities, as well as notices of materials, publications and programs/conferences related to HIV/STD prevention in rural areas. Members will receive, for example, RCAP’s RAP*Time, fact sheets, and the conference brochure. Further, information and requests for assistance from members can be placed on the listserv. Contact Us for a free membership in The Rural Network.
HIV/STD Prevention Guidelines
RCAP has developed, in collaboration with other HIV/STD organizations, two guides that provide direction for HIV/ STD prevention in rural communities. Copies of these guides are available by following the links below. Contact RCAP to request printed copies.
- Tearing Down Fences: HIV/STD Prevention in Rural America
- HIV/STD Prevention Guidelines for Native American Communities: American Indians, Alaska Natives, & Native Hawaiians
RCAP conducts a biannual national conference at Indiana University, Bloomington. The goal of the conference, HIV/STD Prevention in Rural Communities: Sharing Successful Strategies, is to present model, rural HIV/STD prevention programs with emphasis on information exchange and lessons learned. Check the Conferences page for announcement of future conferences and the conference “call for papers.” Conference proceedings published following the conference and are available upon request.
RAP* Time is a monthly bulletin that summarizes current research concerning HIV/STD prevention, particularly in rural settings. Archives of RAP* Time are on the RCAP RAP* Time page. Contact RCAP for a free email subscription.
RCAP Fact Sheets present the latest evidence-based information on the topics most relevant to rural HIV/STD prevention specialists. Please refer to the Fact Sheets page for more detail. Limited numbers of printed copies may be requested.
Every two years, RCAP sponsors the publication of a special issue of The Health Education Monograph, published by Eta Sigma Gamma, the National Professional Health Education Honorary. The monographs feature research articles largely focusing on HIV/STD-related issues in rural areas. Please see the Monograph Articles. Copies of the monograph are available upon request.
The RCAP website (www.indiana.edu/~aids) highlights current RCAP activities including new publications, materials and
conference announcements. The site hosts a wealth of rural prevention information in addition to Fact Sheets,
and other RCAP materials. The site is continually evolving to provide more interactive resources and links to other valuable HIV and STD prevention resources.
HIV/STD Prevention Research
RCAP conducts research on the behavioral and social factors related to HIV/STD risk behavior that have implications for improved HIV/STD prevention efforts in rural communities. Further, RCAP develops and examines innovative education interventions designed to minimize and eliminate HIV/STD risk behavior. The reports of these studies are published in professional journals, including the RCAP Monograph Articles and presented at professional conferences.