Music Festivals Serving as a Catalyst for Collaborative HIV Prevention Education and Expanded HIV Testing in Rural Uganda

James Van Leeuwen, Humphrey Nabimanya, Andrew Ward, Ryan Grundy, Mark Thrun


From 2014 through 2016, we produced a music festival in rural Kabale, Uganda in order to facilitate HIV testing and reproductive health services offered by NGOs specializing in HIV and sexual health. Our aim was to assess the effectiveness of a music festival to engage persons in sexual health and HIV screening services. Clinical service data was compiled and analyzed. Between 2014 and 2016, over 38,000 persons attended the annual festivals and were exposed to HIV prevention messaging. Over 7,000 persons have been tested for HIV. In 2016, 4,588 HIV tests were performed. In addition, 36 long-acting means of contraception were placed, 33 women were screened for cervical cancer, 2 tubal ligations were performed, and 193 men were referred for circumcision. Music festivals created a novel opportunity to provide sexual health services including prevention education, reproductive healthcare, and HIV testing to persons at risk for HIV in rural Uganda.


HIV; rural; community development; Uganda; music festival; AIDS

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International Journal of Community Development

ISSN 2330-2879/ eISSN 2330-2887/OCLC: 854909367

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