Every year on December 1, we observe World AIDS Day to remember those who’s lives HIV and AIDS has impacted. Today we will educate ourselves, and the community, about the realities of HIV and AIDS and how it transforms the lives of many people in our world.
Today the World Health Organization (WHO) realized a report today titled World AIDS Day 2016: end AIDS by 2030*. At this moment there are 36.7 million people living with HIV/AIDS and of that, only half, 18.2 million people are receiving antiviral treatments. In order to end AIDS by 2030, the WHO encourages HIV self-testing. The reason is simple there are still many people who do not know their status. Knowing your status is not only beneficial to the individual. This knowledge can impact the lives of all of your close friends and family.
HIV and AID impacts the lives of many. Unfortunately it is too easy for us to see HIV/AIDS only as a disease, and not see it for how it impacts people’s lives, their families, and their communities.
If there is one message that I want y’all to learn today it is that we are all the same. Just as I have my own family, my own friends, and my own problems, I am not alone in this. We all may not encounter the same trials and tribulations but just because our lives are different doesn’t mean that we haven’t all experienced love, pain, and bliss. Get out, get tested and be kind. I encourage all of us to practice humility, not just in light of World AIDS Day but every day.
Below is a short video clip for an organization I admire, Partners in Health, and their current efforts to reach people living in Sub-Saharan Africa.
*World AIDS Day 2016: end AIDS by 2030, World Health Organization. http://www.who.int/hiv/en/