In an effort to complement the national campaign to commemorate World Aids Day, the Students Partnership Worldwide (SPW) over the weekend supported 1000 youths across the Country to ‘dance for life’ at the Family Kingdom Hall in Freetown.
SPW was invited by the Ministry of Youth and Sports (MYS) to develop a Peer Education Program, which tackles youth exclusion and HIV/AIDS among young people and serve as a replicable model for tackling youth exclusion and HIV/AIDS nationwide.
The program was specifically designed to serve as a resource for other organizations already targeting youths through workshops, awareness-raising festivals and mass-media campaigns.
SPW is also engaged in building the capacity of rural Schools, Health Clinics, Community Based-organizations and local NGOs to provide improved youth services and youth-focused health education and other centrally based institutions to develop consistent links and outreach to rural areas through the SPW Peer Educators.
SPW involves youths to raise awareness on the spread of HIV/AIDS in Schools with a personal interactive and emotional approach, using the language of youth, through music and dance to challenge taboos around sex in partnership with ‘Dance for Life’.
SPW has also encouraged youths to take the lead in testing to know their HIV status; in order to help prevent the spread of HIV and AIDS. SPW has been coordinating efforts with National AIDS Secretariat and Office of the Network of HIV Positives (NETHIPS) to make the event a success.
By Saidu Bah