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World AIDS Day

World AIDS Day, observed December 1 each year, is dedicated to


raising awareness of the AIDS pandemic caused by the spread of HIV
infection. AIDS has killed more than 25 million people, with an
estimated 38.6 million people living with HIV, making it one of the
most destructive epidemics in recorded history. Despite recent,
improved access to antiretroviral treatment and care in many regions
of the world, the AIDS epidemic claimed an estimated 3.1 million
(between 2.8 and 3.6 million) lives in 2005, of which more than half a
million (570,000) were children.

The concept of a World AIDS Day originated at the 1988 World


Summit of Ministers of Health on Programmes for AIDS Prevention.
Since then, it has been taken up by governments, international
organizations and charities around the world.

From its inception until 2004, UNAIDS spearheaded the World AIDS
Day campaign, choosing annual themes in consultation with other
global health organizations. In 2005 this responsibility was turned
over to World AIDS Campaign (WAC), who chose Stop AIDS: Keep the
Promise as the main theme for World AIDS Day observances through
2010, with more specific sub-taglines chosen annually. This theme is
not specific to World AIDS Day, but is used year-round in WAC's
efforts to highlight HIV/AIDS awareness within the context of other
major global events including the G8 Summit. World AIDS Campaign
also conducts in-country campaigns throughout the world, like the
Student Stop AIDS Campaign, an infection-awareness campaign
targeting young people throughout the UK.

It is common to hold memorials to honor people who have died from


HIV/AIDS on this day. Government and health officials also observe
the day, often with speeches or forums on the AIDS topics. Since 1995
the President of the United States has made an official proclamation
on World AIDS Day. Governments of other nations have followed suit
and issued similar announcements.
Awareness Symbol

The red ribbon is a symbol for both drug prevention and for the fight
against AIDS.

AIDS Awareness Origin

The Red Ribbon Project was created by the New York-based Visual
AIDS Artists Caucus in 1991:

1. To remain anonymous as individuals and to credit the Visual


AIDS Artists Caucus as a whole in the creation of the Red
Ribbon Project, and not to list any individual as the creator of
the Red Ribbon Project;
2. To keep the image copyright free, so that no individual or
organization would profit from the use of the red ribbon;
3. The Red Ribbon should be used as a consciousness raising
symbol, not as a commercial or trademark tool.

The artists who formed the Visual AIDS Artists Caucus wished to
create a visual symbol to demonstrate compassion for people living
with AIDS and their caregivers. Inspired by the yellow ribbons
honoring American soldiers serving in the Gulf war, the color red was
chosen for its, "connection to blood and the idea of passion -- not only
anger, but love, like a valentine." First worn publicly by Jeremy Irons
at the 1991 Tony Awards, the ribbon soon became renowned as an
international symbol of AIDS awareness, becoming a politically correct
fashion accessory on the lapels of celebrities. The Red Ribbon
continues to be a powerful force in the fight to increase public
awareness of HIV/AIDS and in the lobbying efforts to increase funding
for AIDS services and research.
AIDS/HIV

The number of people living with HIV is continuing to rise in every part of the
world - including in the UK. There are now 33 million people living with HIV
worldwide and 80,000 people living with HIV in the UK.

What is HIV?

HIV is a virus that attacks the body's immune system - the body's defence against
diseases. The latest research suggests that between 70 and 90 per cent of people may
experience symptoms of infection a few days after having been infected. Three
symptoms occurring together: fever, rash and a severe sore throat should always be
considered a potential indicator of HIV infection. These symptoms usually disappear
within two or three weeks. Other people may not have symptoms to start with. In all
cases, without effective treatment the immune system will eventually become very
weak and no longer be able to fight off illnesses.

Are HIV and AIDS the same?


No. When someone is described as living with HIV, they have the HIV virus in their
body. A person is considered to have developed AIDS when the immune system is so
weak it can no longer fight off a range of diseases with which it would normally cope.

I don't know anyone with HIV... do I?


There are approximately 80,000 people living with HIV in the UK and about a third
of these don't know that they are infected. The epidemic is still growing in the UK
with around 7,000 new diagnoses every year. Even if someone you know is living
with HIV, they may not feel able to tell you.

Is there a cure for HIV?


No, but treatment can keep the virus under control and the immune system healthy.
People on HIV treatment can live a healthy, active life, although they may experience
side effects from the treatment. If HIV is diagnosed late, treatment may be less
effective in preventing AIDS.

What's it like living with HIV?


If people with HIV are diagnosed early and respond to treatment they can be healthy,
work and have relationships like anyone else and have a long life expectancy.

Coming to terms with an HIV diagnosis and getting used to treatment can be very
difficult however, and people living with HIV will often need support from healthcare
providers, friends and family, employers and support organisations.
Why do people find it hard to tell others they are HIV positive?
People living with HIV may find it hard to tell others about their condition as they
worry that people will reject them, or they will experience prejudice from friends,
family and colleagues. People living with HIV can also experience discrimination in
their workplace, in healthcare settings (e.g., GPs and dentists), from members of their
local community and through the media.

HIV prejudice is often the result of ignorance about how HIV is passed on and
unfounded fear of becoming infected. Encouraging those around us to talk about HIV
and find out the facts can help overcome this.

There are lots more facts about HIV - including real life stories - at National AIDS
Trust (NAT)'s main website

More people than ever before are living with HIV in the UK and new infections
continue. HIV is a serious long-term condition and people living with HIV often face
discrimination. Whatever your HIV status, there is a role you can play in ending HIV
prejudice and stopping the spread of HIV.

The UK theme for World AIDS Day 2008, "Respect & Protect", is inspired by the
UNAIDS and World AIDS Campaign ongoing international theme, 'Leadership'. The
international theme is developed as an overall theme which each country is
encouraged to adapt to suit more specific issues around the epidemic in their region.

Each year NAT adapts the international theme to make it relevant to HIV in the UK
developing an appropriate theme and call to action, and producing new and unique
visuals and materials to reflect these messages. Developed through consultation with
people living with HIV, young people and relevant organisations in the UK, this year's
Respect & Protect theme translates the global theme Leadership for a UK audience,
setting out an agenda for individuals to take the lead in their own life.

Respect & Protect is inclusive and highlights the responsibility everyone has to
transform attitudes to HIV and encourage actions that stop its spread.

Respect & Protect inspires individuals to consider the different roles they can play:

Show respect by always treating people living with HIV fairly, respecting their
confidentiality and challenging prejudice wherever it occurs.
Respect themselves and their partners by always practising safe sex to protect
their sexual health.
Find out the facts about HIV, spread the Respect & Protect message and
encourage others to do the same.
World AIDS Day

observed recorded Summit memorials spearheaded


claimed G8 suit raising consultation

World AIDS Day, .. December 1 each year, is dedicated to


.. awareness of the AIDS pandemic caused by the spread
of HIV infection. AIDS has killed more than 25 million people, with an
estimated 38.6 million people living with HIV, making it one of the
most destructive epidemics in . history. Despite recent,
improved access to antiretroviral treatment and care in many regions
of the world, the AIDS epidemic . an estimated 3.1 million
(between 2.8 and 3.6 million) lives in 2005, of which more than half a
million (570,000) were children.

The concept of a World AIDS Day originated at the 1988 World


. of Ministers of Health on Programmes for AIDS
Prevention. Since then, it has been taken up by governments,
international organizations and charities around the world. From its
inception until 2004, UNAIDS . the World AIDS Day
campaign, choosing annual themes in . with other
global health organizations. In 2005 this responsibility was turned
over to World AIDS Campaign (WAC), who chose Stop AIDS: Keep the
Promise as the main theme for World AIDS Day observances through
2010, with more specific sub-taglines chosen annually. This theme is
not specific to World AIDS Day, but is used year-round in WAC's
efforts to highlight HIV/AIDS awareness within the context of other
major global events including the Summit. World AIDS
Campaign also conducts in-country campaigns throughout the
world, like the Student Stop AIDS Campaign, an infection-awareness
campaign targeting young people throughout the UK.

It is common to hold . to honor people who have died from


HIV/AIDS on this day. Government and health officials also observe
the day, often with speeches or forums on the AIDS topics. Since 1995
the President of the United States has made an official proclamation
on World AIDS Day. Governments of other nations have followed
. and issued similar announcements.

AIDS/HIV

The number of people living with HIV is continuing to rise in every


part of the world - including in the UK. There are now 33 million
people living with HIV worldwide and 80,000 people living with HIV
in the UK.

What is HIV?

HIV is a virus that attacks the body's immune system - the body's
defence against diseases. The latest research suggests that
between 70 and 90 per cent of people may experience symptoms of
infection a few days after having been infected. Three symptoms
occurring together: fever, rash and a severe sore throat should
always be considered a potential indicator of HIV infection. These
symptoms usually disappear within two or three weeks. Other
people may not have symptoms to start with. In all cases, without
effective treatment the immune system will eventually become very
weak and no longer be able to fight off illnesses.

Are HIV and AIDS the same?


No. When someone is described as living with HIV, they have the
HIV virus in their body. A person is considered to have developed
AIDS when the immune system is so weak it can no longer fight off a
range of diseases with which it would normally cope.

I don't know anyone with HIV... do I?


There are approximately 80,000 people living with HIV in the UK and
about a third of these don't know that they are infected. The
epidemic is still growing in the UK with around 7,000 new diagnoses
every year. Even if someone you know is living with HIV, they may
not feel able to tell you.
Is there a cure for HIV?
No, but treatment can keep the virus under control and the immune
system healthy. People on HIV treatment can live a healthy, active
life, although they may experience side effects from the treatment.
If HIV is diagnosed late, treatment may be less effective in
preventing AIDS.

What's it like living with HIV?


If people with HIV are diagnosed early and respond to treatment
they can be healthy, work and have relationships like anyone else
and have a long life expectancy.

Coming to terms with an HIV diagnosis and getting used to


treatment can be very difficult however, and people living with HIV
will often need support from healthcare providers, friends and
family, employers and support organisations.

Why do people find it hard to tell others they are HIV


positive?
People living with HIV may find it hard to tell others about their
condition as they worry that people will reject them, or they will
experience prejudice from friends, family and colleagues. People
living with HIV can also experience discrimination in their workplace,
in healthcare settings (e.g., GPs and dentists), from members of
their local community and through the media.

HIV prejudice is often the result of ignorance about how HIV is


passed on and unfounded fear of becoming infected. Encouraging
those around us to talk about HIV and find out the facts can help
overcome this.

There are lots more facts about HIV - including real life stories - at
National AIDS Trust (NAT)'s main website.

More people than ever before are living with HIV in the UK and new
infections continue. HIV is a serious long-term condition and people
living with HIV often face discrimination. Whatever your HIV status,
there is a role you can play in ending HIV prejudice and stopping the
spread of HIV.

The UK theme for World AIDS Day 2008, "Respect & Protect", is
inspired by the UNAIDS and World AIDS Campaign ongoing
international theme, 'Leadership'. The international theme is
developed as an overall theme which each country is encouraged to
adapt to suit more specific issues around the epidemic in their
region.
Each year NAT adapts the international theme to make it relevant to
HIV in the UK developing an appropriate theme and call to action,
and producing new and unique visuals and materials to reflect these
messages. Developed through consultation with people living with
HIV, young people and relevant organisations in the UK, this year's
Respect & Protect theme translates the global theme Leadership for
a UK audience, setting out an agenda for individuals to take the lead
in their own life.

Respect & Protect is inclusive and highlights the responsibility


everyone has to transform attitudes to HIV and encourage actions
that stop its spread.

Respect & Protect inspires individuals to consider the different roles


they can play:

Show respect by always treating people living with HIV fairly,


respecting their confidentiality and challenging prejudice
wherever it occurs.
Respect themselves and their partners by always practising
safe sex to protect their sexual health.
Find out the facts about HIV, spread the Respect & Protect
message and encourage others to do the same.