Unification News for April 2002

IIFWP - Zambia Project Tackles HIV/AIDS

by Nicholas Chisha

On the 13th of November 2001, representatives of 12 African Nations were invited to attend a meeting in Nigeria, Lagos for the planning, training and preparation of the HIV/AIDS educational and prevention project on HIV/AIDS, to be implemented in each country.

This project was initiated by Dr. Chung Hwan Kwak Chairman of the Board of the Interreligious and International Federation for World Peace (IIFWP www.iifwp.org)

The Project focuses on HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention lectures that can be given in schools, communities and places of work with the help of a curriculum and a flip chart teaching aid, commissioned by Dr. Kwak in June 2001.

The presentation is based mainly on the most successful existing curriculums and slide projections already being used in Africa and a number of other places.

Both the curriculum and the lecture charts have been developed and produced by a team working under Dr. Kwak's close supervision. These are 40 colorful page laminated flip charts, which were shipped to Lagos and distributed to the participants at the meeting.

This project as come just at the right time especially here in the Southern part of Africa, where many people are victims of AIDS. The numbers of AIDS cases are always on the increase not in hundreds, but millions.

Zambia being one of the 12 countries involved in this project, the lectures have proved to be very helpful in making people understand the damage and dangers of HIV/AIDS and also learn how one can prevent and protect one self from AIDS.

Here in Zambia most of the victims of AIDS are the youths, therefore our target group is mostly the youths and with these flip charts we are able to lecture in Universities, Colleges and High schools very easily. The response as been so great everywhere we have been teaching, as you can see from the photos. We are really so grateful for these HIV/AIDS flip charts.

On January 24th 2002, five secondary schools attended a lecture on HIV/AIDS at Modern High School. The number of those in attendance was 120. At the end of the lecture there was a proposal from the attendees that HIV/AIDS clubs be opened at these five schools.

On the 25th of January 2002 we had a meeting on HIV/AIDS (Living AIDS free) with the Mayor of Ndola City and three members of Parliament, to see how the Local Authority can be able to fund this project which they promised to seriously look into, because they also felt the project was very important for the citizens. The Mayor invited us to use their public hall to hold seminars and workshops for HIV/AIDS, which is very encouraging for us.

Workshop with Soldiers

Here in our country Zambia, we have been experiencing a big increase in the number of soldiers infected with HIV/AIDS, especially when they return from peace keeping missions abroad.

Due to this serious situation we (IRFF) received an invitation from the Commandant of one of the Army barracks known as Kalewa Barracks in Ndola to hold several HIV/AIDS workshops for the soldiers.

As you can see from the photos in this particular workshop we had 102 soldiers in attendance. The Commandant was very impressed with the contents of our HIV/AIDS lectures (Living AIDS free) that at the end of the workshop requested us to conduct similar workshops in other army barracks which he would organize through his office, so that as many soldiers as possible can get hold of this education in  order for them to make right choices concerning the protection method against HIV/AIDS.

It is our hope that one day we can mobilize a good number of soldiers for a special conference and have some of these soldiers trained to become lecturers in HIV/AIDS (Living AIDS free) so that this message can reach out to many soldiers as possible of our national army.

There is a lot of work that  needs to be done to help these soldiers especially the peace keepers because they are a part of  our society if they are not educated on the importance of Living AIDS free then not only their lives will be at stake but other people in countries where they go for their peace-keeping missions, that is why this not only a national problem but  also international problem where it needs all people of goodwill to come together and work together  to fight this scourge.

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