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The XVI International AIDS Conference, held in Toronto, Canada in August 2006, provided a forum for broader exploration of the complexities of the AIDS epidemic. Importantly, food and nutrition security have been identified as issues that are critically interlinked with HIV/AIDS and that need to be addressed along a continuum of prevention, treatment, care, and positive living. While the conference held many related sessions on gender, poverty, aboriginal peoples, and human rights, there were four sessions that focused specifically on the particular relationships between food security and HIV/AIDS:

HIV/AIDS, Food and Nutrition Security: The RENEWAL Initiative in Eastern and Southern Africa – Sunday, August 13, 2006;
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HIV/AIDS affects rural household food security by impacting people’s ability to produce adequate and nutritious food and/or engage in waged labour to purchase food. Food insecurity increases people’s vulnerability. Poor nutrition contributes to poor health, low labour productivity, low income, and livelihood insecurity. These factors, among others, put people, particularly women and girls, at risk of HIV infection as they are forced to migrate for waged labour or to engage in transactional sex work for income.

A toolkit to support CIDA staff working on initiatives related to food security and rural livelihoods

These guidelines were developed to support the formulation of agricultural policies in developing countries by providing recommendations on how to integrate HIV/AIDS and gender considerations into agriculture and food security programming.

These guidelines offer a synopsis of existing information related to the links between HIV/AIDS, gender inequality, and agricultural development, and they provide a series of recommendations as to how these factors can be taken into account when developing, reviewing, and implementing agricultural programmes. They are intended to provide direction to agricultural programmers by identifying areas of intervention, but have been kept general in order to be adaptable by the end-user in various settings.