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Stigma Action Network


Hi, my name is Anne Stangl and I am a Senior Behavioral Scientist at the International Center for Research on Women (ICRW) and the Secretariat Director for the Stigma Action Network (SAN). Today, I am pleased to tell you about the SAN’s efforts to use social media as a means to promote action to reduce HIV-related stigma and discrimination. Through this initiative, which is supported by ViiV Healthcare’s Positive Action programme, we aim to make information, resources and tools more widely available and to create a more closely connected HIV stigma and discrimination reduction movement that can effectively advocate for change.

The SAN is a global network that was formed in 2010 to foster knowledge sharing and enhance coordination to enable the scale-up of HIV-related stigma and discrimination reduction efforts across the globe. ICRW is currently serving as the Secretariat for the SAN, but we work closely with a 14-member steering committee and a five-member advisory committee to set priorities for the SAN’s activities and engagement in advocacy efforts.  

I’m very pleased that Sonalini Mirchandani, Chief Executive of The Communication Hub and a member of our steering committee, will be joining me later in the tour to provide her perspective about the SAN and the role of social media in a country like India. We’ll also be joined by Josh Robbins, an HIV-positive activist and author of the ‘I’m Still Josh’ blog who will tell you about some of the ways we’ve coordinated our social media activities and how these efforts have effectively addressed stigma and discrimination among key populations online and beyond. 

Key Facts


Social media scale-up as a means to facilitate and strengthen coordinated global HIV stigma and discrimination reduction efforts

Run by:

The Stigma Action Network




Various HIV-stakeholders and the general public


Reaching and inspiring action among diverse HIV-stakeholders across the globe, as well as engaging the general public; Reshaping and re-crafting sometimes complex messages to inspire dialogue via social media; Bridging the gap between users of the SAN website and users of SAN social media channels; Measuring the success of our social media efforts, both quantitatively and qualitatively.


Using social media to strategically reach out to other HIV groups and activists, as well as the general public; Creating and sharing existing images, infographics, memes, videos, articles, podcasts, and blog posts that enable interaction with diverse groups of people; On-going monitoring and evaluation to inform the selection of stigma-related content and how to most effectively present that content via various social media channels.