Today is World AIDS Day. Red, the colour to wear. Red ribbons if not.
But how many people do? I vote not so many.
HIV and AIDS are so stigmatized still, that even supporting a charity and wearing a ribbon is too much for some people. It is really sad. It needs to be changed.
Today however, the information on HIV prevention and, most importantly, acceptance will reach the eyes and ears of the world. The wonderful Prince Harry has enlisted several celebrities to share a secret with the world. Harry himself is meant to be sharing one too. What a genius way to raise awareness. Well done that boy!
The secrets shared so far have ranged from feelings of low self worth, to a former ex world champion boxer being scared of cats. To see the videos, click here.
This is a drive from Prince Harry’s Sentebale foundation, in support of the children of Lesotho who are too ashamed to tell anyone they are ill and so needlessly die. However, I think this is a good message to show the world. Anyone who is living with this disease need not be ashamed. If you think you may have it, please get tested. Ask for help. It makes you stronger, not weaker.
I don’t have so much else to write really. I am HIV negative and can say that with absolute certainty. Part of the visa requirement in the UAE is that you are tested for each new visa. Without saying anything about myself (because no one needs to know too much!), it doesn’t matter how low risk your lifestyle is, there is a fear when you have that test. That is magnified when there is a real chance of you having been exposed to the virus. What else is magnified? The relief when your results are negative. Anything else? The care and love and assistance you are given by the medical teams and your family if you are positive.
I was reading an article the other day about a woman who is positive, but non-transmittal. I didn’t even know that was a possibility. She lives a normal life. Her husband is negative, her child is negative, and she is being constantly monitored for her unborn child’s development. This just proves that HIV/AIDS is not the death sentence it once was.
Social media for once can be used for the greater good. For building people up and not tearing them down. Let’s get behind this one and push it as far as it will go!