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Project launched to educate NGOs
Tuesday 21 September 2004
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ANGOLA: Project launched to educate NGOs

[This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations]

JOHANNESBURG, 14 July (PLUSNEWS) - A campaign to educate international and national NGOs on HIV/AIDS prevention kicked off this week in Angola, a country slowly waking up to the HIV/AIDS epidemic.

The European Commission Humanitarian Office (ECHO) project, to be implemented by the UN Children's Fund (UNICEF), will help NGOs mainstream HIV/AIDS into their existing activities to ensure that communities receive adequate knowledge of the disease.

The training will instruct NGOs on the facts of HIV/AIDS: how it is prevented, transmitted, strategies for preventing infection, and the epidemiological characteristics in Angola. The NGOs will also design interventions using theatre, debate, radio and music.

After 27 years of civil war, infection rates in Angola are estimated at 5.5 percent, compared to rates of 20 percent and upwards in neighbouring countries. The challenge will be to stop AIDS before it reaches catastrophic proportions.

The year 2003 could provide "a rare window of opportunity for Angola to avoid the disaster witnessed in nearby countries, but that window is closing," a UNICEF statement said.

According to a UNICEF study, only eight percent of Angolan women have adequate knowledge of HIV/AIDS transmission and prevention, and nearly one-third of all Angolan women have never heard of HIV/AIDS.

"This is why informed, innovative and industrious NGOs are vital in Angola," UNICEF Representative in Angola, Mario Ferrari said.

The country's large number of internally displaced persons, together with increased contact with military personnel, low levels of education, a young population (nearly 70 percent of Angolans are under 24), and a high poverty index, indicate that Angola has almost all of the risk factors associated with a rapid increase in prevalence.

"NGOs should be in the frontline in the fight against HIV/AIDS," ECHO's Representative in Angola, Maria Olsen noted. "These training seminars will ensure that populations now reached in the course of NGO field activities (health, education, etc.) will at the same time be targeted by HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention campaigns. Often this will be in the most remote areas of the country."


Recent ANGOLA Reports
HIV/AIDS plan moving "too slowly",  30/Aug/04
Churches urged to join fight against HIV/AIDS,  30/Jan/04
Irish NGO calls for increased AIDS prevention,  8/Dec/03
National AIDS plan launched,  28/Nov/03
Making safe sex cool,  16/Oct/03
The Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis & Malaria
The Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis & Malaria
Mothers and HIV/AIDS

PlusNews does not take responsibility for info in links supplied.


PlusNews is produced under the banner of RHAIN, the Southern African Regional HIV/AIDS Information Network. RHAIN's members currently include:

  • IRIN
  • Inter Press Service (IPS)
  • Health Systems Trust
  • Health & Development Networks
  • GTZ/Afronets

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