Journal of Community & Applied Social Psychology

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Volume 18 Issue 6 (November/December 2008), Pages 527-646

AIDS‐NGOs and political participation: Brazilian and Canadian experiences (pages 615-629)


Non‐governmental organizations (AIDS‐NGO) are an instrument of political pressure and assistance, often serving as a life reconstruction aid for people living with HIV/AIDS. In this case study, we analyze data from historical documents, in‐depth interviews, and questionnaires obtained from participants and community agents in two AIDS‐NGOs: one in Canada (NGO‐Ca), and another in Brazil (NGO‐Br). Despite contextual differences, both NGOs are involved in a fight against stigma and discrimination that may aggravate existing social exclusion. Variances in political participation are nevertheless evident. In NGO‐Ca, efforts are directed towards maintaining and consolidating human and social rights. In NGO‐Br, the primary goal is building these. In NGO‐Ca, the participant is part of a structured organization where he or she receives the required supports; the NGO is thus a service provider. Conversely, in NGO‐Br, the participant is both the actor and author of collectively constructed supportive actions. It is hoped that the lessons learned from this limited case study will assist in the strengthening of AIDS‐NGO organization and activity, particularly in the developing world context. Copyright © 2008 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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