30 Jan 2015

Media Statement: Global Network of Young People Living with HIV (Y+ Network) Steering Committee announced

30 January 2015

Today, Y+ Network, affiliated to the Global Network of People Living with HIV (GNP+), announced its new Steering Committee, comprised of young and adolescent advocates living with HIV (A/YPLHIV) from all regions of the world. The purpose of this group of young people is to guide the development of the agenda for adolescents and young people living with HIV, to determine programmatic priorities and make decisions through transparent processes and to ensure that the issues of various communities of A/YPLHIV from all regions are well represented.

This follows a meeting convened by regional and national networks of young people living with HIV and Y+ advisors, which gathered in Cape Town, South Africa, in April 2014 to chart the strategic direction, good governance and accountability mechanisms for the global community of young people living with HIV.

The outgoing co-chair of the current Y+ Advisory Group, Duncan Moeketse, said that the change in the governance structure of the network would increase accountability and help to create a stronger global structure for adolescents and young people living with HIV globally, to ensure that their needs and aspirations remain relevant in the response.

“This new leadership embodies the diversity of adolescents and young people living with HIV from all over the world. We are excited to see the dawn of this new generation of leadership committed to the rights and well-being of the groups that are in the centre of the epidemic. This will surely have a positive impact in the trajectory of the response. We are grateful for the continuous support of GNP+, UNAIDS, Stop AIDS NOW!, the Robert Carr Fund and all our partners who have supported Y+ since its inception in 2010,” Moeketse said.

The Y+ Network has grown from a virtual network of young people living with HIV into a strong structure with geographic and gender representation of young people living with HIV. To retain young advocates who have always being part of the response, the members of the Y+ Programme transition to providing mentorship to the new governing leadership as the members on the Advisory Group.

The following new members of the Steering Committee are:

East and Southern Africa

  • Consolata Opiyo, 24 (F) Kenya
  • Loyce Maturu, 22 (F) Zimbabwe

West and Central Africa

  • Cedric Nininahazwe, 27 (M) Burundi
  • Anita Ikwue, 18 (F) Nigeria

Latin America and Caribbean

  • Diego Luis Grajalez, 23 (M) – Belize
  • Jaime Luna, 27 (M) – Panama


  • Julien Kerboghossian, 23 (M) – Lebanon
  • Abderrahim el Habachi, 22 (M) – Morocco

Asia Pacific

  • Gautam Yadav, 24 (M) – India
  • Sudip Bhattarai, 20 (M) and Priya 14 (F) – Nepal


  • Yana Panfilova, 16 (F) – Ukraine

North America

  • Lorraine Anyango, 24 (F) – USA
  • Ari Hampton, 26 (M) – USA

“In the coming weeks, the new Steering Committee members will familiarise themselves with their new roles, begin to develop a work plan, determine resources needed and identify strategies for supporting national and regional networks of young people living with HIV. We look forward to working more closely with all of you” – said Moeketse.

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About Y+ Network

In 2010, after discussions with the Global Network of People living with HIV (GNP+), which was beginning to develop a youth programme, Young Positives decided to integrate with GNP+’s new programme. This programme – called Y+ – aimed to mainstream youth issues within GNP+’s network and advocacy. Later in 2012 a Y+ Advisory Group was established to provide feedback on the development of the Y+ Programme, and consisted of a voluntary group of 28 YPLHIV who had demonstrated a commitment and a connection to a constituency within their region or community.

While both bodies served their respective purposes, from 2011 – 2013, the Y+ Advisory Group and Programme began to evolve into more of an ad-hoc global network for issues pertaining to young people living with HIV. In late 2013, the Y+ Advisory Group, which consisted of 28 individual representatives, began calling for a strategic planning meeting to review the history and evolution of Y+, Y+’s niche in the HIV response and come to decisions around its structure, mission, vision and priorities.

Read more about the Y+ Network and its new Strategic Direction here

Read the Term of References for the Y+ Steering Committee member here

For more information visit www.yplusleadership.org

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