ZMSAC leads AIDS candlelight memorial PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 17 May 2014 11:58

United in the advocacy to control and prevent the spread of HIV-AIDS, thousands of people turned up for the AIDS Candlelight Memorial 2014 at Plaza Pershing yesterday afternoon.

Organized by the Zamboanga City Multi-Sectoral AIDS Council (ZMSAC), the activity was an international activity themed “Let’s keep the light on HIV”.

A torch parade from Ciudad Medical in Nuñez Extension to Plaza Pershing at 5pm kicked off the activity. It was followed by a program graced by Mayor Beng Climaco and highlighted by an ecumenical prayer and praise songs—all in memory of the people who died of HIV-AIDS.

The lighting of the candles and the community singing capped the activity.

Councilor VP Elago acknowledged the guests and participants while City  Health Officer Rodel Agbulos gave the welcome remarks. Department of Health Regional Director Dr. Nimfa Torrizo delivered the closing statement.

Agbulos said 86 cases of HIV-AIDS were reported in the city from 1995 to present. From January to May this year, the CHO recorded 6 cases while four other cases are for confirmation in Manila.

Agbulos stressed that most of the cases are from the 15 to 34 years old age group registering about 72 percent.

The International AIDS Candlelight Memorial started in 1983 and is one of the world’s oldest and largest mobilization campaigns for HIV-awareness globally.

The web page of the International AIDS Candle light memorial hosted by the Global Network of People living with HIV states that the event is more than just a memorial. “The International AIDS Candlelight Memorial serves as a community mobilization campaign to raise social consciousness about HIV and AIDS. With 33 million people living with HIV today, the International AIDS Candlelight Memorial serves as an important intervention for global solidarity, breaking down barriers of stigma and discrimination, and giving hope to new generations,” the web page said. — Sheila Covarrubias