The Impact of SASA!, A Community Mobilization Intervention, on Reported HIV-Related Risk Behaviors and Relationship Dynamics in Kampala, Uganda

January 2015 - Structural Prevention

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Kyegombe, N., Abramsky, T., Devries, K. M., et al. Journal of the International AIDS Society (November 2014), Vol. 17, E-publication.

Start, Awareness, Support and Action (SASA!) is a community mobilization intervention that seeks to prevent intimate partner violence (IPV) and reduce HIV-related risk behaviors at the community level. The authors assessed the community-level effect of SASA! on primary and secondary outcomes for IPV, HIV-related risk behaviors, and relationship dynamics. This research, conducted between 2007 and 2012 in two administrative divisions of Kampala, Uganda, included four intervention and four control sites. Two cross-sectional surveys were conducted at baseline and follow-up (1,583 and 2,532 participants, respectively, from randomly selected households), with separate quantitative analyses for male and female respondents. Men's reported condom use at last intercourse with their partner was higher in the intervention group (41 percent) compared to men in the control group (22 percent). Men in the intervention group were also 50 percent more likely to have tested for HIV. Women in the intervention group felt significantly more able to refuse sex with their partner than women in the control groups. In addition, more women in the intervention group reported relationship improvements, including joint decision-making and open communication with their partner. The authors concluded that a community-level intervention such as SASA! can improve relationship dynamics and reduce HIV-related risk behaviors between intimate partners.

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