Aids program work with truckers in Orissa, India

Published: 25 April 2006

Koraput district in Orrisa is a center for industries both large and small, and the hub of a highway network. Many young men migrate there from rural areas seeking jobs. The population is very mobile and there is a high demand for commercial sex. These conditions are risk factors for the spread of HIV/AIDS and other sexually-transmitted infections (STIs). Oxfam’s partner organization, South Orissa Voluntary Action (SOVA), has been working in and around Koraput since 1996. SOVA’s research showed that knowledge of HIV/AIDS and of STIs was low and that safe sex was not practiced. Truck drivers were identified as a key high-risk group on which to focus. However, experience has shown the value of widening this focus.