The evaluation of the JEWEL project: An innovative economic enhancement and HIV prevention intervention study targeting drug using women involved in prostitution

S. G. Sherman, D. German, Y. Cheng, M. Marks, M. Bailey-Kloche

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The JEWEL (Jewellery Education for Women Empowering Their Lives) pilot study examined the efficacy of an economic empowerment and HIV prevention intervention targeting illicit drug-using women (n = 50) who were involved in prostitution in Baltimore, Maryland. The intervention was comprised of six 2-hour sessions that taught HIV prevention risk reduction and the making, marketing and selling of jewellery. Bivariate comparisons examined behaviour change pre-and 3-months post-intervention. The intervention's effect on the change in the number of sex trade partners from baseline to follow-up was explored with multiple linear regression. Participants were 62.0% African American, 5.0% were currently employed, and the median age was 39 years old (Inter Quartile Range [IQR]: 34-45). Women attended an average of six (IQR: 4.5-6.0) sessions. The women sold over $7,000 worth of jewellery in eleven sales. In comparing self-reported risk behaviours pre and 3-month post intervention participation, we found significant reductions in: receiving drugs or money for sex (100% versus 71.0%, p <0.0005); the median number of sex trade partners per month (9 versus 3, p = 0.02); daily drug use (76.0% vs. 55.0%, p = 0.003); the amount of money spent on drugs daily (US$52.57 versus US$46.71, p = 0.01); and daily crack use (27.3% versus 13.1.0%, p = 0.014). In the presence of other variables in a multivariate linear model, income from the jewelry sale was associated with a reduction in the number of sex trade partners at follow-up. The pilot indicated effectiveness of a novel, HIV prevention, economic enhancement intervention upon HIV sexual risk behaviours and drug utilization patterns.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalAIDS Care - Psychological and Socio-Medical Aspects of AIDS/HIV
Volume18
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2006

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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