Collaborative HIV Adolescent Mental Health Program (CHAMP)

Category 3

CHAMP is a manual-based program of 10--90-minute sessions delivered over 10 weekends. The sessions were designed to increase HIV knowledge and decrease stigma surrounding HIV infections; increase authoritative parenting, caregiver decision-making and caregiver monitoring of children; increase family frequency and comfort discussing hard-to-discuss subjects (e.g., sexuality and risky behaviors); increase connectedness to caregiver social networks; decrease neighborhood disorganization, and increase social control and cohesion. The manual introduces these skills through dramatic depiction in a cartoon-based storyline. The CHAMP program provides the necessary group context for caregivers to negotiate norms and practices for health-enhancing alternatives in the community.

Goal of the Practice
  • CHAMP was launched as a researcher--community partnership to address increasing rates of adolescent HIV/AIDS exposure in urban minority neighborhoods.
Core Components
  • Linking collaborators from outside and within a setting to design a program
  • Creating a stakeholder advisory group to oversee program activities
  • Designing programs that integrate scholarly and indigenous knowledge and perspectives relevant to a setting to shape prevention messages and activities
  • Using credible messengers, such as those already connected to a setting, to implement interventions in neighborhoods
Noteworthy Results
  • Intervention parents showed significantly greater pre- to post- test gains in knowledge than the comparison group. For youth, no significant differences were noted.
  • On average, youths and parents' answers showed a pre- to post-test increase of 27 and 8%, respectively, in accurate knowledge of transmission.
  • Once recruited, more than 90% of participants completed the educational interventions.
Lessons Learned
  • International HIV-prevention alliances are increasing. Such alliances are challenged by trust issues, power differentials and ideological differences.
  • To enhance trust in the partnership the Study utilized cultural translators familiar with the norms of both the host and donor countries.
  • Egalitarianism between host and donor organizations is critical for collaboration and requires concessions in both parties.
Focus Areas
Counseling and Testing
Implemented By
University of Illinois at Chicago
Participating Organization
South Africa
Target Population
  • Adults (over 18)
  • Children (ages 2-12)
1000 - 5000
Implementation Years
01/2003 - 08/2008