In this contribution we discuss the process of feedback and dissemination that we adopted following research with children affected by AIDS in southern Africa. We outline our reasons for engaging in detailed feedback and dissemination, distinguishing between active or passive processes and discuss the participatory methods we adopted. Through our reflections we consider feedback as an obligation to participants and dissemination as a potential agent of social change. In addition we evaluate the effectiveness with which we were able to truly incorporate the voices of young people in our dissemination and relinquish control of the outcomes to make them available for action among policy-makers. In conclusion we highlight that active dissemination, although not able to guarantee that research recommendations will be acted upon, at the very least opens dialogue and enhances understanding among those able to implement action.