USIU-Africa observes World Aids Day

By Mumbi Mwangi & Sarah Mwaitete

Since 1988 the world has taken pride in celebrating the World AIDS Day (WAD) on December 1. To build up to this date, the Counseling Department partnered with the Voluntary Counselling and Testing (VCT) and WAD Committee, Durex Kenya, Standard Chartered, Aga Khan Hospital and Mr. Stanley Ngara - the King of Condoms, to organize various activities on campus from Wednesday, November 22 to Friday November, 25.

Bearing the theme “Shoulder to Shoulder as One, Take Control to End Inequality & AIDS” and with an aim of raising awareness, enhancing solidarity and igniting hope on matters HIV, the event took place at the Parking Lot B where participants engaged in color painting and various games. Additionally, through the punchline “Rock a Ribbon” got to wear a red ribbon and paint the campus red.

Participants also had a chance to undergo a free primary breast cancer screening courtesy of Aga khan Hospital, get a variety of condoms from Durex Kenya for free as well as financial advice and consultation from Standard Chartered.

Moreover, participants were encouraged to get their HIV status checked at the VCT office located in the Counseling center. More than 100 students showed up for this activity.

The event culminated in a Talent Show held at the Auditorium and hosted by our very own USIU Radio presenters, Michelle Nyaribari and Sandra Marondo who are both pursuing BA. in Journalism. Furthermore, two guest shared their testimony as persons living with HIV, which demystified some of the inaccurate perceptions surrounding the virus and giving an assurance that a positive HIV diagnosis is certainly not a death sentence: one can still live a happy, full and rewarding life surrounded by love and community.

All this was made possible by the organizing committee and the immense support from the Counseling Center, VCT Office led by Lydia Winda, VCT Counselor, Multimedia and Maintenance Departments, student volunteers among others.

The Counseling department would like to encourage the university community to take control and responsibility of their well-being and their sexual health; in fact, whenever possible, consider being a keeper of those around you by encouraging abstinence or safer sex practices in your conversations. The VCT Center is open for service throughout the semesters.

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