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Program Components

Program Objectives

The program seeks to prevent HIV among young Latino parents by increasing feelings of parental protectiveness and the emotional attachment between a parent and a child to positively affect parental behavior.


Program Content

Respeto/Proteger is a six session curriculum focused on HIV prevention. The core components of the program are organized as follows:

  • Session I: Understanding Each Other. This session is intended to establish the sentiments of parental protectiveness among the participants and demonstrate how these sentiments relate to family health and safety. Discussion topics include taking responsibility, being a role model, and goals for the future.
  • Session II: Male/Female Relationships. This session focuses on respectful and healthy behavior within a relationship through discussion and storytelling. It also provides an introduction to STDs and HIV.
  • Session III: The Life Cycle/Young Parenthood. This session deals with the consequences of actions, and asks participants to contemplate how contracting a disease such as HIV would affect their families. It includes a guest lecture by an HIV-positive parent.
  • Session IV: Barriers to condom use and other safe practices are discussed in the context of gender roles and cultural norms. Participants are divided by gender. This session also covers HIV transmission and testing procedures.
  • Session V: This session focuses on the decision-making process and uses a game to explore high- versus low-risk behaviors. Through a video and group discussion, this session also covers violence and substance abuse. 
  • Session VI: During the final session, participants revisit the personal goals they identified in Session I and discuss the actions they must take to achieve these goals. They also draft and share a letter to their child discussing their aspiration for the child’s future.

Community and academic partners integrated HIV prevention strategies into Respeto/Proteger based on Social Cognitive Theory, the Theory of Reasoned Action, and concepts from the theory of gender and power with strategies from El Joven Noble and Con Los Padres programs.


Program Methods

The program is delivered using the espejo (mirror) process of instruction, which emphasizes group discussion and sharing of personal experiences, small group discussion, videos, and guest speakers.