Archive for March, 2010

WORLD TB DAY

March 29, 2010

Hallo World this is a message from Mr. Red Ribbon – Kenya 2009/2010.

Mr Red Ribbon

Mr. Okola (Mr. Red Ribbon

World TB Day is an international event commemorated on the 24th March each year worldwide. This is an occasion where all organizations working in the field of TB. HIV/ AIDS comes together to share the challenges that do still face T.B and HIV/AIDS.

In Kenya this event was held in Nakuru the Headquarters of Rift Valle Province. Rift Valley is ranked number one in T.B infections followed closely by Nyanza Province. It is believed that T.B has been around since the beginning of mankind due to airborne transmission of transmission of droplet nuclear with T.B bacteria.

Mr. Red Ribbon

World TB Day

Dispute being curable in the vast majority of cases T.B is the leading cause of sickness and death among PLWHA. And my view at this point is that , donors and health programs that fail to address T.B as part of HIV/AIDS services do miss the opportunity to impact the disease and most likely to kill PLWHA in developing countries around the world.

Okola

Mr Red Ribbon during the World TB Day

Responding to the threat posted by T.B , HIV co-infection requires integrate service delivery and co-ordination between T.B and HIV programs to endemic countries. However evening countries with high burden of disease, T.B and HIV programs have tended to operate independently addressing T.B and HIV in isolation and this paving way for STIGMA and DISCRIMINATION. So my humble request to the whole world is that, “ Let each and every person go for both T.B and HIV screening….”. and here I do shout a loud voice and you should also assist me to “STOP” Stigmatizing and Discriminating those who have Tested Positive. Let us live in LOVE and harmony giving each other HOPE for we all belong to one GOD.

THE HISTORY OF THE RED RIBBON

March 19, 2010

World AIDS Day 2009

In 1991 a group of people working in the art New York formed an organization called Visual AIDS.

Their aim was to spread awareness of AIDS and the need for funds for research and care. They needed a strong symbol. A member, Paul Tabara thought of the yellow Ribbon at that time being worn in memory of the USA soldiers killed in the Gulf – war. He the decided on a Red Ribbon to represent Blood Passion (both anger at HIV/AIDS and Love) for its victims and a warning that the disease must not be ignored stigmatized or discriminated.

The Red Ribbon was first worn in public by an actor; Jeremy Irons at the 1991 Tony Awards ceremony for the US Television Industry. Soon the Red Ribbon became a popular fashion accessory among the celebrities.

The Red Ribbon spread worldwide when 10,000 Red Ribbon were distributed at the Freddie Mercury AIDS Awareness Tribute Concert in London in 1993. More than a b billion people around the world watched the concert on TV and saw the Red Ribbon. Since then the Red Ribbon has become the global symbol for HIV/AIDS pinned on clothing and printed on posters. It reminds us of the need to unite to fight HIV/AID’s stigma and discrimination and the need for tolerance of carries and sufferers. Paul Tabara died of AID’s, but the symbol he created is still stronger than ever.

On 1st December 2009 over 30,000 people in Kenya turned up to celebrate the International World AIDS Day at the Kenyatta International Conference Centre – K.I.C.C grounds in Nairobi. The most remarkable event of the day was the award ceremony of the winners of the Mr.& Mrs. Red Ribbon 2009 – 2010 Nakuru Kenya was also watched with over 10,000,000 and the Kenyan’s countrywide and the message from Mr. Red Ribbon was “ We all belong to one and we are one, why stigmatize and discriminate, we all have equal human rights”.

I’m willing to distribute over 50,000 Red Ribbons to the delegates who shall be attending the World AIDS Conference in Vienna later this year. I feel that it is the right time for the world to know that so much has been done on awareness; research is also underway to find a vaccine. Prevention and care we are proud to say that the outcome is good, but nothing and pure nothing has been done to avert stigmatization and discrimination, so help me deliver this message worldwide. The only challenge facing me is how to reach Vienna.

I do therefore thank you n advance all well wishers, sponsors, donors, NGO’s, F.B.O’sand the Government Sector who will contribute so that my dream comes true.
We are there to give HIV/AID’s a Humane Face.

Yours Mr. Red Ribbon – Kenya
Peter Onyango Okola

VALENTINE’S RED RIBBON Mr. and Mrs, Red Ribbon Valentine’s 2010 NAKURU KENYA

March 3, 2010

World AIDS Day 2009

The Red Ribbon was started as a grass root effort on the fight against HIV/ AIDS. The Red Ribbon is the international symbol of AIDS awareness that is usually worn by people all year round particularly during the World AIDS Day every December 1st.
This is to show care and concern and to remind others of the need and support in the fight against HIV/AIDS. It is also a symbol of commitment to challenge the stigma and prejudice surrounding the pandemic.

The Red Ribbon Symbolizes Blood, Danger and Love. The tails of the Ribbon were designed to point down to symbolize the life flowing away.

This Valentines Day we made an effort to visit three video dens within Bondeni, Ponda Mali and Free Area of the Nakuru Municipality with a locally produced movie titled “SHUGA”. The movie was free of charge and was graced by the representatives of PLWHA who facilitated the session by giving the audience a small talk on self stigma, name calling and separation and segregation of persons living with HIV and AIDS. The representative also insisted and explained the importance of VCT centers.

On my part as a facilitator and a peer educator I would say that the theme of the day and the intention of reaching out to the members of the community with anti – stigma messages were fully met. The role of Voluntary Counseling and Testing was also highlighted among both the youth out of school, youth in school and ladies in the low income setting of these areas visited. These video shows were scheduled on a day when all of these groups were all at their weekend Endeavour’s and thus being convenient in passing the message across. There being characters in the movie they could identify with made it interesting following up the story and identifying risky behavior was really straight forward during the discussion held at the end of the show. My own personal experience can be found on my blog spot in the following address: http://www.maddiefxm.blogspot.com

Awareness and prevention go hand in hand, help prevent the spread of this epidemic by not stigmatizing those infected or affected and get peoples talking about it. The RED RIBBON.

A story by Mr. Peter Okola -n Mr. Red Ribbon Nakuru 2009/2010