When we think of December 1st, many of us think of it as just 24 days until Christmas. For those living with HIV/AIDS, it's a day to remember, promote and work towards finding a cure for the devastating disease. 2009 is the 21st annual World AIDS Day and the crusade towards a cure struggles on.
World AIDS Day began in 1988 and from the beginning it has focused attention on the global HIV/AIDS epidemic. The movement's ultimate goal is to bring attention to the ongoing fight to find a cure and bring attention to the care and support AIDS patients need.
An integral part of World AIDS Day is the bringing together of people in the community to celebrate and remember the victims of the disease. The Canadian AIDS Treatment and Information Exchange has an extensive list of events happening across Canada. Make sure you check out the World AIDS Day schedule, but here are a few of the events:
Vancouver - The Positive Women's Network is hosting a Condom Blitz
Edmonton - HIV Edmonton's annual candlelight vigil at the Citadel Theatre, 7pm
Saskatoon - AIDS Saskatoon has a Glimmer of Hope Party from 1:30-3:30 to celebrate success stories.
Thunder Bay - AIDS Thunder Bay is hosting their Second Annual AIDS Day Breakfast
Montreal - La Maison du Parc's Voices of Hope World AIDS Day Concert at St. Andrew and St. Paul Church
Halifax - the Micmac Native Friendship Centre is hosting a candlelight vigil, 7pm
These are just a few events happening across Canada, please leave us a comment on this post if you know of any others.
Stephen Lewis, a frequent guest on The Hour and a champion to bring an end to the rampant epidemic in Africa has posted a World AIDS Day message on the Stephen Lewis Foundation Website:
Back in 2005, at the G8 Summit, all countries agreed unanimously to achieve “Universal Access” for AIDS treatment, prevention and care by the year 2010.
It’s not going to happen. We have slightly over four million people in treatment around the globe, but there are at least nine million who require treatment today, and millions of them won’t be reached by the end of 2010.
Prevention is not yet working. For every two people whom we put on anti-retroviral treatment so that they might live, there are five new infections. Prevention remains an elusive goal in the high-prevalence countries.
That leaves care. In this category, as well, the need greatly outstrips the response. Just think of the monumental numbers of orphans and grandmothers struggling to survive, let alone the vast host of people living with AIDS. ...
Do you do anything for World AIDS Day? Leave us a comment and let us know.