There are approximately 24,000 people living with HIV in El Salvador. The concentrated epidemic affects certain populations the most, including men who have sex with men (MSM), transgender people and sex workers.
The number of transgender people who have been killed in El Salvador has increased dramatically in recent years, particularly activists involved in championing transgender rights. As well as the dangers they face every day, these people are not getting the HIV prevention information they need, and face stigma and discrimination when accessing health services.
We are working with Asociacian Atlacatl Vivo Positivo (Atlacatl) to protect the health of these marginalised populations. Atlacatl was founded by five people living with HIV in El Salvador who were facing stigma and discrimination when trying to access health services, education, and employment. They formed Atlacatl to defend and promote the human rights of people who face threats to their health because of such stigma and discrimination.
Atlacatl have done much to improve the quality of life of marginalised populations and people living with HIV, highlighted by reaching 179,642 people in 2017 with activities to help reduce stigma and discrimination.
Atlacatl is also pioneering the use of social media and messaging platforms such as Facebook, WhatsApp and Grindr to encourage people to attend health consultations and to reach out to young people, MSM, people living with HIV and general population with prevention messages. In 2017 they reached 5,630 people through this new approach in El Salvador.