This World Aids Day, it’s good to remember the progress we are making in helping those with HIV, raising awareness and also tackling the stigma. Here’s some positive news about how the world is changing in a good way.
AIDs awareness and activism is gaining more momentum every year. Charities and celebrities are working hard to erase the stigma against those with HIV. It’s encouraging to see so many people in a position of influence help educate others towards tolerance, understanding and empathy for those who have the disease.
Although we have yet to find the cure, managing the disease is now better than ever. Those that are diagnosed are able to continue living healthy and fulfilling lives. The stigma that HIV means death is gradually being defied.
Celebrities Raising Awareness
Celebrities that have really stepped up and are working towards raising more awareness include Miley Cyrus who recently donated $500,000 to fight AIDS.
Joan Rivers won celebrity apprentice in 2009 and donated all her earnings to God’s Love We Deliver, an organisation that delivers food to those that have HIV in New York City.
Bono founded the RED foundation, which has raised over $300 million towards the cause.
The Elton John AIDs Foundation has raised over $321 million in 55 different countries since it’s founding in 1992. The foundation has just announce that they will be funding HIV testing in Lambeth, London for two years. The National Institute for Heath and Care Excellence aims to increase testing in people with undiagnosed HIV in England (NICE) have been worried about their testing program previously due to lack of funding.
There are an estimated 103,700 people are living with HIV in the UK. 17% are unaware that they have the infection.
Apple and RED
Apple have teamed up with RED, and apple users will have access to apps and merchandise which will go towards funding the foundation. This includes buying content, from gaming apps to music, which have partnered with the foundation. Red Apple products, such as the AppleWatch band, will also have their profits go towards the cause.
From December 1 to December 6 Apple is donating $1 to (RED)’s mission for every purchase made with Apple Pay at any Apple store, on Apple.com or through the Apple Store app, up to $1 million. Bank of America will also make a donation for every Apple Pay transaction using its cards, also up to $1 million.
Dr. Chil-Yong Kang and his team has created the first genetically modified, whole-killed vaccine to be approved for testing in humans. In Phase 1 of the testing, there have been no adverse affects.
“We are now prepared to take the next steps towards Phase 2 and Phase 3 clinical trials,” stated Jung-Gee Cho, the CEO of Sumagen Co. Ltd.
Development of Sumagen’s HIV vaccine is supported by the government of Canada as well as the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
HIV Vaccine begins clinical trials in South Africa, on a larger scale than ever before.
You can support as well
There are many charities for AIDs awareness and activism now. You can donate money, or help support in other ways. Here is a list of some of the most well recognised organisations.