Monday, December 17, 2007

AIDS : Still Positive?

I had just watched the latest episode of Project Runway S#4 - spoiler ahead. Jack, the HIV+ contestant for 17 years had to quit because he had a nasty infection on his upper lips. He was unwilling to quit cos he came a long way but doctor advised he needed a more serious treatment for the infection.

Left with not much option, he quit, completely devastated. The departure was very emotional especially to all the other designers. Inadvertently, it affected the morale of the designers at the set. Of cos, I was sad to see him leave because you could tell he really wants it, badly. Besides, he is also one of the better designers.

Just how many of us are aware that 1st of December is World AIDS Day? How many articles or events were organised on 1st December 2007? A writer from The Star pointed out that our country had completely missed the date, hence, the lack of articles, events, were contributed to that day.

Today, an article on The Star newspaper caught my attention. Two very young youths who in addition to participating in the fun of the Starwalk over the weekend in Penang, they walked the walk carrying placards around their neck that say, "I am HIV positive. Walk with us” and “My kawan (friend) with HIV/AIDS is still my kawan”, to grab the other walkers’ attention."

It was a very clever move to raise HIV/AIDS awareness at a much publicised event and more so that it is carried out by two very healthy teenagers who do not have any agenda but to hope that the public and the government will pay more attention AIDS/HIV+ infected people including kids.

Walk for AIDS awareness

PENANG: Starwalk means different things to different people. To a couple of teenagers, it is a platform to raise HIV/AIDS awareness.

Youth Advisory Centre (YAC) president Oh Chin Eng, 19, and his Starwalk partner Nur Faizah J. Jayakumar, 17, were just like any other fun-loving teenagers, except they were wearing placards bearing HIV/AIDS messages throughout the walk.

Although they do not have the virus, they were willing to carry messages like “I am HIV positive. Walk with us” and “My kawan (friend) with HIV/AIDS is still my kawan”, to grab the other walkers’ attention.

Oh said the purpose of their walk was to stop discrimination against people living with HIV/AIDS and to raise public awareness on the disease.

“It is a very common illness but many are still ignorant about it and respond negatively towards people living with the disease.

“We came across a man who said that as long as people did not come into contact with those with HIV/AIDS, they would be fine.

“But there were some young people supportive of us and offered us advice. They thought we had HIV/AIDS, which we do not,” he said.

He said they had been hoping that people would be drawn to their cause and join them in the walk, but were disappointed that the older generation did not respond positively.


I truly applaud the two youth for their courage and selfless attitude.

1 comment:

Fable Frog said...

i watched that episode of Project runway too~ it is sad to see his condition and having to leave the competition~