South Georgia Advocates Speaking Out for HIV/AIDS Awareness

By: Caroline Gonzmart Email
By: Caroline Gonzmart Email

Today marks the 5th annual National Women and Girls HIV/ AIDS Awareness Day.

Health department staff say educating the community about the virus is key, so people can understand what causes it and what is required for it to spread.

Many women who contract HIV say they learn quickly which friends they can count on.

Diane Walden has lived with the virus for 19 years, and now speaks to various church groups and community organizations about the need to communicate and get tested.

Says Walden, "The true friends came forward [when I revealed I had HIV] -- and that's a good thing to have because most people, when they find out ... they get shunned, you get talked about, you get picked on, and that's a hard pill to swallow."

Debra Wallace is the New Beginnings Thomasville supervisor. She says the purpose of the organization is to get the message out that girls and women need to be having protected sex -- and that those who test positive for HIV are normal people, too.

"There's a lot of people that have the virus .. they don't even want [anyone] else to know because they feel like people will shun them, or you know, don't want to be around them."

The Health Department says the easiest way to prevent contracting or spreading the virus is by practicing safe sex.

They say with modern medicine those who test positive for the virus can still live a long life.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by alan li Location: london on Mar 12, 2011 at 12:57 AM
    I just saw on the news that according to a report from CDC, the number of gay people on the largest HIV dating site STDslove. com has reached 310,000. This site seems to be powered by plenty of fish and most of the gay people on it are sexy and good looking. Personally, I have no objection to gay marriage. My concern is that more and more gay men get STDs. It seems that gay men is easier to get an STD and they even don't know when they have it.
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