Rates of sexually transmitted infections, including chlamydia, gonorrhea, and syphilis, have increased significantly in recent years. Youth and young adults aged 15-24 accounted for 52% of new STI diagnoses in Texas in 2021. 

However, not all young adults face the same risk for STIs. LGBTQ individuals have disproportionately high rates of STIs and HIV, creating an urgent need to develop culturally appropriate educational materials. According to the American Journal of Public Health, “By identifying specific segments of the population that have elevated disparities, targeted marketing campaigns can be used to encourage testing for particular infections or use of certain screening services.”  

Overview and Development Process

The Pride Guide for STIs is a free online resource developed for use by LGBTQ young adults primarily in a medical clinic setting. The End Stigma, End HIV Alliance commissioned the development of the resource in response to persistently high HIV rates in San Antonio.

The resource was developed by Healthy Futures of Texas alongside young adults, who provided extensive information on the needs of LGBTQ young adults in San Antonio. LGBTQ young adults have consistently been challenging to reach through traditional programs. To address this, Healthy Futures of Texas utilized positive youth development principles outlined by leading health authorities such as the Department of Health and Human Services. HHS notes that, “Programs that involve youth are proven to be more effective at engaging the population and, therefore, to have a greater impact.”

Young adult advisors identified numerous barriers to clinical care, including concerns about discrimination, lack of health insurance coverage, and lack of knowledge about the health care system in general. They also identified gaps in their understanding of STIs and safer sex practices because they did not receive sufficient sex education in school. Their goal was to design a learning experience that helped other LGBTQ young adults reduce their risk.

Throughout the process, a team of medical reviewers, including OBGYNs, pediatricians, and researchers, provided guidance and feedback. Following a soft launch in July of 2023, the final resource is scheduled to launch in March of 2024.


The Pride Guide to STIs follows three young adults in a medical clinic receiving HIV screening, HIV treatment, and related services. The artwork accompanying the stories was designed by a San Antonio artist who blends indigenous styles with contemporary media. The contents are designed to be self-paced and easy to understand. At the end of the resource, young adults should understand the importance of screening and treatment for sexually transmitted infections and feel comfortable seeking out medical care. 

Topics covered in the resource include: 

Additional Resources

The Pride Guide to STIs was developed by a group of staff, young adults, and designers from San Antonio.

We're grateful to the End Stigma, End HIV Alliance for their support of this project.

In 2021 and 2022, Talk About it Texas, powered by Healthy Futures of Texas, collaborated with LGBTQ+ youth from the project's inception. They played a pivotal role in shaping the curriculum, providing valuable insights into its structure and content. Their input guided decisions on which topics to address and the most effective approaches for doing so.

This project was funded by the End Stigma, End HIV Alliance of San Antonio, supported by Ending the HIV Epidemic funds.

Thank you to Young Invincibles for allowing us to share their Healthy Adulting Toolkit for Health Insurance as part of our curriculum resources.