This is encapsulated in this year’s theme “Human First … I Matter,” which was revealed in a press release from the National AIDS Secretariat. It stated that: “The theme and related activities hope to explain the importance of appreciating the fact that people are human first and then any other labels thereafter. By appreciating the one common thread that binds us all as humans, it is expected that persons would respect and promote the fundamental rights of others.”
According to the release the Ministry of Health further noted that it “is committed to the reduction of stigma and discrimination which acts as a barrier to persons accessing prevention and treatment services, who too often end up living “underground.” This year, we wish to invite all to join us as we appreciate our humanity and human rights. As humans we matter.”
The objectives of the activities planned for 2012 include “Getting to zero tolerance for HIV/AIDS-related discrimination” and moving people to understand that “whether a person is HIV positive, a sex worker, a homosexual or otherwise s/he is first a human being, and as such should be treated that way … and that zero discrimination starts with us as individuals.”
As such, this year’s activities include health education sessions in work places, the World AIDS Day March, the Minister of Health’s Address and The Ride the Bus Campaign. The month-long activities also include broadcast/radio guest appearances by health educators addressing the theme, a Whistle Stop and National Testing Day. Further information pertaining to the activities will be released as it becomes available.