December 1st is recognised internationally as World AIDS Day. World AIDS Day is a unique opportunity each year for us to reflect on the way that HIV and AIDS affect us personally, our local communities and how we can respond to the global pandemic including the need for support and understanding for people living with HIV/AIDS, and the need for the development of education and prevention initiatives.
According to UNAIDS estimates, there are now 39.5 million people living with HIV, including 2.3 million children. During 2006 some 4.3 million people became newly infected with the virus. Around half of all people who become infected with HIV do so before they are 25 and are killed by AIDS before they are 35.
The other day, I was in a metro heading to
Around 95% of people with HIV/AIDS live in developing nations and
Started on 1st December 1988, World AIDS Day is now focusing on increasing awareness, fighting prejudice and improving education. Recently, Governor Peter Obi of
As the cases of rape during armed robbery increases in
World AIDS Day in
“Leadership”, highlights the need for innovation, vision and perseverance in the face of the AIDS challenge. The campaign calls on all sectors of society such as families, communities and civil society organisations – rather than just governments – to take the initiative and provide leadership on AIDS.
Worthy of mention here is the great initiative of Celtel
One of the biggest challenges in
The health ministries in the three tiers of government must initiate programs targeting this informal sector in collaboration with their leadership of the association. Alternatively, the leaders of the Market Associations, NURTW, drivers etc must make World AIDS Day a compulsory event in their calendar. They should invite health professionals and NGOs on AIDS to deliver well packaged program that will include musical/drama performances, free counseling, testing and clinics for treatment. The government must also be seen to be putting measures on the ground to provide drugs for this treatment at affordable prices without being hampered by corrupt government officials.
Break the silence about HIV in
This year, it is up to you, me and us to stop the spread of HIV and end the prejudice. It’s World AIDS Day; get involved and get talking!