Raise money. Increase awareness. Fight prejudice. Improve education.
Today, December 1, is World AIDS day and I would like to take this opportunity to remind all y’all that this is the time of year when the WORLD works together in unison to shine a light on the plight of those living with AIDS. The main purpose of World AIDS Day is to help raise money for AIDS treatment and research, increase awareness of the disease, fight the prejudice of those who are afflicted and improve education for those who are misinformed about HIV and AIDS. The theme for this year’s World AIDS Day is Universal Access and Human Rights:
The theme for World AIDS Day 2009 is ‘Universal Access and Human Rights’. Global leaders have pledged to work towards universal access to HIV and AIDS treatment, prevention and care, recognising these as fundamental human rights. Valuable progress has been made in increasing access to HIV and AIDS services, yet greater commitment is needed around the world if the goal of universal access is to be achieved. Millions of people continue to be infected with HIV every year. In low- and middle-income countries, less than half of those in need of antiretroviral therapy are receiving it, and too many do not have access to adequate care services.3 The protection of human rights is fundamental to combating the global HIV and AIDS epidemic. Violations against human rights fuel the spread of HIV, putting marginalised groups, such as injecting drug users and sex workers, at a higher risk of HIV infection. By promoting individual human rights, new infections can be prevented and people who have HIV can live free from discrimination. World AIDS Day provides an opportunity for all of us – individuals, communities and political leaders – to take action and ensure that human rights are protected and global targets for HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment and care are met.
For more information on the theme of World AIDS Day 2009 click HERE, for more info on World AIDS Day as a whole visit the official website HERE. Twitter, which has grown to massive proportions this year, has turned #red for World AIDS Day to help raise awareness and and funds for HIV/AIDS treatment and research:
Twitter has turned red to mark World Aids Day 2009. The makeover is designed to mark World Aids Day, which aims to raise awareness and funds for HIV/Aids projects across the world. Twitter’s new red livery also contains a link directly through to the Twitter page of Product Red, the HIV/Aids awareness charity founded by U2 singer Bono which hopes to fight the spread of Aids in Africa. Twitter users are also able to add a virtual red World Aids Day ribbon to their Twitter picture. The virtual ribbon, known as a Twibbon, is displayed on top of a user’s profile picture on all of their tweets. There is also a special hashtag, #red, which changes tweets red to pick out mentions of World Aids Day. And celebrity Twitter users are also throwing their weight behind the awareness campaign. Stephen Fry said the red tweets were “cool”, and urged fellow Twitter users to show their support for Aids charities: “The tworld has gone #RED for #WorldAIDSDay. You can visit www.worldAIDSday.org to read real stories about HIV and show your support.” The actor Ashton Kutcher, who has more than four million Twitter followers, tweeted: “10% of world population is in Africa. 67% of all HIV cases are there. Get involved #red” It’s the first time Twitter has changed its layout or colour scheme to mark an event in this way. Other websites, such as Google, regularly display special “doodles” or logos to mark notable dates. The Google.com webpage currently has a red ribbon logo on it, with a link through to Google.org, the search giant’s philanthropic division, where web users can find out more about HIV/Aids projects.
Hopefully you’ll be hearing about World AIDS Day from many sources all day long today … wherever in the world you are. I hope you will pay attention to the message and offer your help if you can. Until we find a cure, the fight will carry on. Silence = Death … it’s time to speak up and demand a cure.
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