Black adolescent girls often engage in risky sex behaviors. These behaviors are the primary reason that black girls contract HIV. Risky behaviors include having sex at an early age, sex without condoms, multiple partners, and using alcohol or drugs prior to sex. Interventions to address these behaviors have been tested;yet none has affected the disproportionate rate of HIV among black girls and women. The goal of the proposed study is to delay sex initiation or reduce risky sex behaviors among black girls. This proposal is to test a multi-component, family-level, developmentally appropriate, community-based intervention for benefit in:
(Aim1) delaying or decreasing risky sex, (Aim2) increasing HIV knowledge, communication with mothers, racial pride, empowerment, self-esteem and sexual assertiveness, and (Aim3) improving mother's communication and bonding with daughters and maternal monitoring: A 2-group design will compare intervention and attention control groups. The sample will include 96 black middle school-aged girls and 96 of their mothers. A 12-week intervention will be provided enhancing mother-daughter relationships and building racial/ethnic pride to help black girls develop self-esteem and assertiveness and be empowered to protect against HIV. Intervention mothers have sessions focused on adolescent development, the value of open communication with daughters, and social pressures related to sex that girls face. Attention control group girls and mothers receive a 12-week general health education intervention focused on improving health (e.g., diabetes, smoking) in girls. Data will be collected at baseline, post, 3 and 9 month follow-up on outcomes. Analysis: To examine whether the intervention reduces the likelihood of sexual initiation or engaging in risky sex (Aim1), success or lack of success in achieving this will be determined.
For Aims 2 +3 means will be calculated for each of the two groups and compared for each measure. Simultaneous pooled-t confidence intervals to adjust for multiple measures will be used to estimate the magnitude of the difference between groups. Impact: The findings of a beneficial intervention will be used to change HIV prevention science and for translation across community settings to decrease risky sex among black girls.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Exploratory Grants (P20)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZMD1)
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University of North Carolina Greensboro
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