Foundation sensitises youths on need to stem HIV/AIDS prevalence
The Advocacy Manager of the Foundation, Miss Oluwakemi Gbadamosi, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja, ahead of the Dec. 1, 2015 World AIDS Day.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that this year’s theme is “End It, Dream Big.’’
Gbadamosi said that the day was to remind youths on the dangers associated with the virus and educate them through arts and craft and poems, poetry, cultural dances and drawings.
According to her, HIV prevalence is still high among youths of secondary school level, institutions of higher learning and youth corps members between the age range of 15 and 45.
She said that the information would be centred on preventive messages and the best ways to protect themselves and to know their HIV status and HIV-related illnesses.
The advocacy manager cited UNAIDS 2014 and 2015 Reports on HIV/AIDS which it stated that 36.9 million people were living with the scourge globally.
She quoted the reports as saying “two million people are newly infected, 1.2 million die of HIV/AIDS-related illnesses and 15.8 million people are on anti-retro viral drugs.’’
She said that people living with the virus and received anti-retroviral therapy treatment consistently and correctly would be able to have the viral load in their system reduced.
She noted that the chances of such people transmitting the virus to others would also be slim.
She, however, stressed that “we cannot achieve an AIDS-free generation without addressing issues of treatment, testing, stigma and discrimination.
“In our foundation, we believe that treatment is very important and we have got to the stage globally where no one deserves to die of the virus anymore.
“There are drugs available globally for the scourge.’’
She said AHF was set up to achieve its mandate of enrolling 30,000 people living with the virus by 2020.
NAN reports that the World AIDS Day provides an opportunity to draw attention to the HIV epidemic around the world.