Nelly Bassily | October 4, 2010
This news story covers the fourth annual report which tracks progress towards achieving the 2010 target of providing universal access to HIV prevention, treatment and care. The report is called Towards Universal Access. HIV and AIDS continue to affect life in sub-Saharan Africa. Rural areas and farming communities are affected in particular ways. Children are left without families, and much agricultural and indigenous knowledge is lost because it is not passed on to the next generation. Many people still find it difficult to talk about or acknowledge HIV and AIDS, partly due to the way it is most commonly spread, through unprotected sex. Some countries have led successful campaigns to raise awareness and break down social taboos. But many people still do not receive the treatment they need.
You can download the 150-page report here:
The UN produces some useful factsheets on HIV and AIDS, for example:
–http://www.unfpa.org/hiv/docs/factsheet_transmission.pdf (on preventing mother to child transmission)
–http://www.genderandaids.org/downloads/events/Fact%20Sheets.pdf (on HIV, AIDS and gender).
This site provides lots of information on HIV and AIDS in Africa: http://www.avert.org/hiv-aids-africa.htm.
In a recent Radio Resource Bank, we highlighted a manual for reporting on HIV and AIDS in Africa: http://weekly.farmradio.org/2010/05/10/telling-the-hiv-story-a-practical-manual-on-hiv-prevention/.
Here you will find a link to a radio drama for young people on HIV prevention: http://weekly.farmradio.org/2009/10/05/can-tru-love-withstand-the-test-%E2%80%93-a-radio-drama-on-hiv-prevention/.
Farm Radio Weekly has published these stories related to HIV:
Local food and its usefulness for HIV positive people: http://weekly.farmradio.org/2009/01/26/africa-local-food-essential-for-hiv-positive-people-un-integrated-regional-information-networks/
HIV positive women grow mushrooms: http://weekly.farmradio.org/2009/03/02/2-uganda-mulago-positive-women%E2%80%99s-network-discovers-potential-of-mushroom-cultivation-written-by-joshua-kyalimpa-for-farm-radio-weekly-in-kampala-uganda/
Farm Radio International has produced a number of scripts on HIV and AIDS. Topics covered include gender, youth, prevention, and good nutrition. You can browse the list here: http://farmradio.org/english/radio-scripts/health.asp.
You could consider producing a program about HIV and AIDS and how it affects farmers and rural communities. Depending on the level of awareness, acceptance or taboo in your region, it may be difficult to find interviewees. But perhaps you could approach an NGO or organization working with HIV and AIDS issues. You could also speak to health workers, or find families and individuals, including children, who may have lost relatives or friends to AIDS. Topics to cover could include:
-how the loss of family members affects a farming family
-to what extent the illness is discussed in the family
-how much people understand about how the disease is spread
-whether communities know about testing and available treatments
-whether people want to know their HIV status and why (or why not)