AIDS Education and Awareness
HIV has become a state of emergency in some countries and is taken as a chronic disease that affects all ages. An Infected person taking medication can live a normal life compared to the person not taking the pills. ARVs reduce the chances of bacterial infections or complications that come with the disease. People are encouraged to use protection to avoid the risk of spreading the disease. It is essential to get tested and know your status and your partner’s status, LGBTQ, drug users, sex workers are also advised to get tested.
According to the director of the ACW, the reason there has been a decrease in the HIV rate is that many people might have stopped testing or due to stigma or phobia. With this in mind, the Aids Committee of Windsor started encouraging people to know their status, and also if infected one should use the medication and avoid transmitting the disease. Sometimes, infected individuals are out for revenge and intentionally engage in unprotected sex to spread the disease. Infected pregnant women are advised to visit the clinics to get educated on the preventive measures to protect the unborn child.
The ACW has introduced preventive measures in the community, such as offering free condoms to people, especially in learning institutions like colleges and universities. This measure is to ensure young people protect themselves from this disease. They also provide them in hospitals in VCTs for a better strategy to help reduce the spread of HIV. The committee also offers sterile needles in hospitals and individuals who need them to administer medication such as insulin. Stigma is one of the problems we have towards individuals living with this disease. Problems with family members are also a challenge because this disease affects the family members of the infected person in one way or another. Another challenge is that the victims may also face hardships getting the medication or even the care they need. People living with HIV face discrimination from people with HIV stigma, they are excluded from most activities, and most of them have testified losing friends and even family.
The ACW has worked tirelessly to ensure that stigma is not an issue by educating people more on caring for the infected. The services they offer have immensely helped people of Chatham-Kent and Windsor-Essex by fostering an environment that has supported HIV/AIDS-positive patients from all backgrounds. The committee has also advised people to be more responsible when it comes to their health and to always know their HIV status to help in risk reduction and disease control. The AIDS Committee of Windsor welcomes every individual who has questions concerning HIV /AIDS and its transmission to visit them.