BASAR- The Targeted Intervention unit HOPE ARUNACHAL, Leparada district, under the Arunachal Pradesh State Aids Control Society, Naharlagun, Govt of Arunachal Pradesh observed the “WORLD AIDS DAY “ and conducted an HIV/AIDS awareness programme at OLD MARKET, Basar, Leparada district here on Friday, in collaboration with public, youths and various schools.
Addressing the participants, Project Manager, Mrs Dakjum Riba said that “it is very important to remove the misleading concepts about HIV infection prevailing in the mind of the common people,” and lamented that the society starts abandoning a person if the person is diagnosed as HIV positive.
“It is the fear of social discrimination that prevents a good number of people from coming for HIV tests available in hospitals, health centres and diagnostic laboratories,” She said.
“The key to end discrimination is to increase awareness among the people and thus change the mindset of the society. The HOPE ARUNACHAL, TI-UNIT, Leparada is working with this motto to preach social awareness upto the grassroots level,” She added.
AO cum M&E, miss Topi Riba while referring to the differences between AIDS and HIV, , said that “HIV is the virus that causes infection and damages the immune system, but AIDS is the last stage of HIV infection and becomes the fatal reason of death.”
She spoke also about the causes of HIV infection, including sex without condom, sharing syringes, contaminated blood transfusions and organ transplants, “besides from HIV infected mother to the newborn baby.”
Mrs Kirter Angu, ANM said that HIV doesn’t spread through kissing, sharing food, hugging, insect bites, sharing toilet seats, bathing, etc, and mentioned some of the symptoms of HIV infection, such as swelling, headache, skin rashes, dry cough, pneumonia, muscle pain, etc.
She further informed that HIV testing facility is available with HOPE ARUNACHAL and district hospital here and at the CHC in leparada.
Peer Educator, Mr Tojo Angu informed that In Leparada, the HIV is getting spread through injecting drug substances, sex workers, migrants, and also pregnant mothers,”.
He also spoke about “the notorious role of different types of drugs and alcohol in society,” and expressed concern over the growing drug addiction among the youths.
He made a presentation showing the cycle of addiction. “Alcohol consumption also ultimately leads to liver damage and liver cancer,”
Lastly, the said programme came to its end with the participation of more than 40 people comprising, youths, teachers/ housewives, FSW, IDU etc. whereby, Miss Marpi Bam, ORW, gave vote of thanks to the participants as well as to team of HOPE ARUNACHL TI-UNIT, Leparada.
Every year, on 1 December, the world commemorates World AIDS Day. People around the world unite to show support for people living with and affected by HIV and to remember those who lost their lives to AIDS.