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Mukta: Targeted Interventions for Groups at Risk

Mukta, which means “freedom” in Sanskrit, was part of the Avahan India AIDS Initiative and worked with female sex workers and men who have sex with men in the Indian state of Maharashtra to reduce their risks and vulnerabilities towards sexually transmitted infections and HIV.

Project Date: 2004 - 2014
Funder: Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Country: India
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In its first three phases, Mukta reduced the sexually transmitted infection rate among target groups by over 30%

Equipped a team of 178 peer educators and 103 non-government organization staff to deliver outreach and health services

Fostered 79 community-based organizations for female sex workers and men who have sex with men, which have secured legal registration in India and taken up social issues beyond HIV

Reached 549,000 female sex workers and men who have sex with men with information to reduce their risk of sexually transmitted infections and HIV

What We Did

  • Brought together local stakeholders and community members to reduce the prevalence of sexually transmitted infections among female sex workers, at-risk men who have sex with men, and transgendered populations, empowering them to control the spread of HIV and AIDS and seek their basic human right to health care
  • Supported at-risk populations by fostering an environment that promotes their safety and allows them to identify, demand, and participate in the provision of quality healthcare. The project promotes an integrated package of services, including innovative behavior change communication and improved access and linkages to sexually transmitted infection management and commodities, such as condoms and medicines
  • Successfully handed over all of its interventions to the Government of Maharashtra in April 2012 as part of a planned transition process (one of the only two Avahan partners to transition all of its interventions to the government on schedule)

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