Zambo joins Int’l AIDS memorial PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 16 May 2016 13:27

The City Government-led Multi-sectoral AIDS Council and the City Health Office (CHO) on Sunday spearheaded the commemoration of International AIDS Candlelight Memorial in fitting ceremonies held at the Sta. Cruz Island to raise HIV awareness and remember people who perished due to the dreaded disease.

Globally commemorated, the Zamboanga activity was highlighted by a fluvial parade aboard the Philippine Navy’s BRP Batak from the Majini Pier in Calarian to the Great Sta. cruz Island. An ecumenical prayer and candlelight ceremony followed.

City Health Officer Dr. Rodel Agbulos said the commemoration of International AIDS candlelight memorial is an annual activity that seeks to sustain the advocacy on prevention and control of HIV-AIDS and more importantly to remember the barriers faced by people living with HIV specifically related to access to treatment, care and support.

He admitted that Zamboanga City remains vulnerable to the dreaded disease and therefore the government and its partners in the private sector should continually improve approaches to prevent and control HIV-AIDS.

The CHO has an HIV-AIDS Unit that is focused on strategies on AIDS prevention and control as well as providing access to treatment, care and support to people living with HIV. The sustained creation of the Zamboanga Multi-Sectoral AIDS council is one of the strategies initiated by the local government.

On Saturday night (May 14), the CHO along with its partners also led the observance of AIDS Hour through the simultaneous lighting of candles from 6-7pm at Paseo del Mar, R.T. Lim Boulevard, Rotary Whell at Gov. Camins Rotonda, Talon-talon Barangay Hall and Tumaga Barangay Hall.

Now on its 33rd year, the commemoration of 2016 International AIDS candlelight memorial is themed “Engage, Educate, Empower” which emphasizes the need for people living with and affected by HIV to join hands and work together in the response to HIV. — Sheila Covarrubias