Freelance Nomad

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Wake Up Pune

I know. The posts have dried up again recently. I know I'm in danger of crying wolf if I plead lack of time but things really have been chaotic recently (though wonderfully so).

Workwise, at the moment it's all systems go for Wake Up Pune, which kicks off on the 20th November.

Wake Up Pune is a city-wide HIV/AIDS awareness campaign being organised by a coalition of agencies working in the field of HIV/AIDS. DISHA (Deep Griha's Integrated Service for HIV/AIDS) is playing a major role.

What the campaign boils down to is this:

Does Pune have a problem? Yes.
Does Pune know there is a problem? No.

India is now the country with the single largest number of people living with HIV/AIDS (PWLHA) at 5.7 million (UNAIDS 2006). One in five of those cases are in Maharashtra, Pune's state.

According the the latest figures we have, the National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO) conservatively estimates that HIV prevalence in Pune is 1.8%, nearly twice the WHO epidemic mark of 1%! These are numbers from 2002... I think they've given up counting recently.
Given that Pune has a (rapidly growing) population of 4 million, that's at least 80,000 PWLHA. Nobody talks about this. People are burying their heads in the sand. Hence Wake Up Pune.

I've just been working on the campaign website - - designed by Coen with content from yours truly. If you're interested, full details about the campaign can be seen there.

Since I'm on the subject, here's a quick refresher for everyone...

There are only four ways to contract HIV:

• Unprotected sex

• Sharing infected needles
Exposure to HIV infected blood
Mother to child transmission

HIV cannot be transmitted through:

• Coughing, sneezing
• Shaking hands, kissing or touching
• Sharing food or drinks
• Sharing crockery or cutlery
• Contact with toilet seats
• Insect or animal bites
• Swimming pools, baths
• Eating food prepared by someone with HIV

Check out the website if you have time. It's got a few images of the posters we're producing for the campaign, along with details of the various activities in the pipeline.


Post a Comment

<< Home