Schouten, B., Vlug-Mahabali, M., Hermanns, S., Spijker, E., & Van Weert, J.C.M. (2014). To be involved or not to be involved? Using entertainment-education in an HIV-prevention program for youngsters. Health Communication, 29(8), 762-772. doi: 10.1080/10410236.2013.781938

Abstract: The purpose of this study is to gain insight into factors that are associated with youngsters’ involvement with dance4life, a global HIV-prevention program. The Youth Engagement Framework, which includes factors impacting youngsters’ involvement on three levels (individual, social, and system), was used as a theoretical base. In total, 67 youngsters participated, with 21 of them still involved in dance4life’s program, and 46 not. They either were individually interviewed or took part in subsequent online or face-to-face focus groups. Results show that both individual, social, and system-level factors are associated with youngsters’ involvement. Involved youngsters have higher intrinsic motivation to prevent HIV, receive more social support from parents and friends, and are stimulated more by dance4life to remain part of their program than youngsters who are no longer involved. Hence, HIV-prevention programs should focus on all three levels simultaneously to successfully stimulate youngsters’ involvement.

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