This profile was prepared when Quarraisha Karim was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 1994.
The New Idea
Quarraisha Karim is launching a comprehensive AIDS intervention program that uses participatory research methods to develop an effective intervention strategy. Reaching a wide range of individuals, Karim 's program is concern about AIDS related issues for women, teenagers, prostitutes, migrants, and those in the rural community. Giving special attention to the disproportionate rate of infection among women, she is working to understand the nature and progression of the epidemic and the impediments to changes in popular behavior. She empowers disadvantaged communities to lobby for change by conducting studies to provide them with the necessary empirical ammunition. Quarraisha is also establishing a regional network to facilitate the flow of such information between key decision makers and health workers, with a focus on the transition between the populace's acquisition of knowledge and changes in its behavior.