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Stigma Action Network

The need

Despite great strides in medicine, technology and behavioural interventions, HIV stigma and discrimination persist across the globe due in part to a lack of inter-sectorial dialogue and collective action. There are many groups working to combat HIV-related stigma and discrimination around the world, but for the most part, these groups work in isolation. To maximise the impact of anti-stigma efforts, there is a need for organisations and activists to share information and learning, speak with a collective voice, raise external awareness about existing best practices, and coordinate efforts for both efficiency and effectiveness. The SAN was formed to bridge these gaps.

We spent the first two years of operation as a network setting up our structure. We also focussed on establishing a website that would foster global networking across sectors on HIV-related stigma and discrimination, and that would allow users to access and share knowledge, tools and resources.

From there, our goal was to expand the Network’s global reach. Our social media scale-up is designed to make sure we are effectively reaching and engaging our key audiences – to make sure that they know about the SAN and are using our resources so that we can inspire coordinated and effective action against HIV-related stigma and discrimination at the local, regional and global levels.

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.