IAPA has many ways to volunteer based on your time availability and interest area including:
- Board Member
- Committee Member
- HIV Prevention Education Instructor
- Summer Internship Program
- University Service Learning Program Intern
Community Outreach Programs
HIV Prevention Education Outreach Program
The HIV Prevention Education Outreach Program is taught throughout the year in collaboration with local community organizations throughout Arizona. It is our hope is that through education the community can understand the reality of HIV/AIDS. Our instructors are both passionate about public health and dedicated to the cause of fighting the spread of HIV.
We teach the basic scientific facts of HIV biology, HIV transmission, and how transmission can be prevented. We also teach about the progression of an HIV infection in the body, and why the immune system is so important for human health. We use a scientific approach to teaching about HIV in order to dispel the myths and stigma surrounding the virus. For More Information click here
Summer Internship Program(SIP)
Every year IAPA implements the Summer Internship Program (SIP), to educate the school and University students in Chennai, in scientific facts of HIV/AIDS. Volunteers from the University of Arizona and Arizona State University are recruited, trained for 6 months, before coming to Chennai. In Chennai they remain for 2 months, conducting HIV/AIDS education program to students of educational institutions.
One of the goals of IAPA is to provide a rewarding and life changing experience for both the volunteers who come from the United States as well as those who are from India. This is accomplished in several ways, including:
- Basic Tamil instruction to facilitate basic communication with those in Chennai, allowing for volunteers to completely immerse themselves in South Indian culture.
- An orientation for the volunteers from both the United States and India to prepare them for working together.
- Free time in the evenings and weekends to go out to experience local culture while exploring Chennai including its surrounding towns, beaches, and cultural sites.
- Select long weekends off from teaching to travel near and far and visit beautiful places all across India.
In addition to curbing the spread of HIV, a major focus of this organization is to show the volunteers the beauty of India and encourage them to invest their hearts in Indian culture while continuing the fight against HIV. We believe that by doing this the volunteers are motivated to even greater degree to have a lasting impact in Chennai.
The IAPA educational initiative is spearheaded by our summer volunteer program, an eight-week program where students from Arizona universities travel to India to teach HIV prevention education in schools and the community. Our teaching groups consist of American volunteers who are both passionate about public health and dedicated to the cause of fighting the spread of HIV, as well as university students from within Chennai who serve as translators and teaching counterparts. This arrangement allows both Americans and Indians to teach and learn in the language with which they are most comfortable. IAPA guarantees that all members of the teaching groups are themselves knowledgeable about the topics included in our curriculum. This program confers an enormous benefit both to participating schools and students. The primary focus is to ensure that students are knowledgeable about HIV so that they can protect themselves from becoming infected; we believe that prevention is a sword that we as students can wield in the fight against HIV/AIDS. While many other organizations focus on providing education and treatment to high-risk groups such as sex workers and truck drivers, IAPA is addressing the needs of youth who will have to face these issues in coming years.
Our curriculum is entirely fact-based; IAPA has no political or religious affiliations. We teach the basic scientific facts of HIV biology, HIV transmission, and how transmission can be prevented. We also teach about the progression of an HIV infection in the body, and why the immune system is so important for human health. We use a scientific approach to teaching about HIV in order to dispel the myriad of myths and stigma surrounding the virus. Beliefs such as the idea that only people who are visibly ill are HIV positive, or that HIV is a form of divine judgment not only contribute to higher infection rates, but also to a stigma that is associated with HIV positive individuals. We hope that through education, students can overcome these misconceptions and understand the reality of HIV/AIDS. Our curriculum also includes secondary information on other common health-related issues in India such as malaria, tuberculosis, and the importance of proper hygiene.