It is 2015 and our perception of HIV/AIDS has greatly changed ever since the disease emerged in Uganda in the 1980s. There are all kinds of treatments and resources — things that simply didn’t exist when the epidemic began.
However, does this mean that the killer disease is no longer alive in Uganda? Absolutely not. Many young people continue to contract HIV, and even though reduced, people continue to succumb to AIDS, in spite of the existence of life prolonging drugs which help contain the disease.
Let’s look at the figures. According to The Uganda Demographic Health Survey 2011 report by Ministry of Health, Ugandans living in urban areas are more likely to be HIV positive than those in rural areas with 8.7% of these being positive compared to 7.0% of their rural counterparts. In the age bracket of 25-29 years, only 38.6% have comprehensive knowledge about HIV/AIDS whereas only 38.9% have the same comprehensive knowledge in the 30-39 year old bracket.
The above proves the fact that AIDS is still very alive and we must find new ways of creating awareness about it especially among young people who are victims of the disease.
Therefore with this background, Reach A Hand, Uganda (RAHU) together with partners, continue to raise awareness about HIV/AIDS. With the iKnow concert slated for World AIDS Day on Tuesday December 1st 2015, RAHU will create a fun yet informative space to speak about issues concerning HIV/AIDS and inspire young people to stay safe by testing for HIV and advocating for abstinence, remaining faithful to one sexual partner or practising safe sex as decisions to fight the scourge.
The concert will be at Cayenne Restaurant and Lounge and will be graced by East Africa’s finest band Swahili Nation together with Uganda’s top artists Navio, Ray Signature, Maurice Hassa, Jody, Van Data, Keko to mention but a few.
Do not be left out, come and take a stand by getting to know your status and be a part of the movement to get to zero – zero new HIV infections, zero discrimination and zero AIDS related deaths.
Like they say, this is 2015 and not 1980, young people must be empowered by speaking the language that they understand in hope that they will change on their lifestyles and health, this is a great opportunity for all of you, fellow young people. Wear It Red!
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