MANILA CITY, AMONG MORE THAN 2,500 ADVOCATES FROM DIFFERENT ORGANIZATIONS AND GROUPS TO PARTICIPATE IN INTERNATIONAL AIDS CANDLELIGHT MEMORIAL
Health Secretary Dr. Francisco T. Duque III and Manila City Mayor Alfredo Lim will speak.
WHO: Men in uniform, Faith-based organizations, hospital workers, government agencies, community-based organizations, NGOs, support groups of people living with HIV based in the cities of Manila and Quezon with guest speakers Sec. Francisco T. Duque III and Mayor Alfredo Lim.
WHAT: 25th International AIDS Candlelight Memorial. The program includes key messages from representatives from the support group of people living with HIV and guest speakers. Performances from different groups will also grace the program.l
WHERE: QUIRINO GRANDSTAND, MANILA CITY
WHEN: 5.00 pm, Friday, May 23, 2008
1. To remember those who have died of AIDS and to support those who are living with HIV and AIDS. To provided information to people about the HIV and AIDS services and volunteer opportunities offered by local organizations.
2. To promote the theme: “Never Give Up, Never Forget”
Background on the
The International AIDS Candlelight Memorial
In May 1983, the first AIDS Candlelight Memorial was initiated by a few people whose lives had been shaken by a then-emerging “mysterious” disease. Twenty five years have passed – the HIV pandemic has been declared a “global emergency” with millions of lives affected by HIV and AIDS, and the International AIDS Candlelight Memorial has become the world’s largest community mobilization to call attention to HIV and AIDS.
The International AIDS Candlelight Memorial is among the world’s oldest movements by civil society for HIV and AIDS remembrance, awareness and community action. Now celebrating its 25th year, the historic Candlelight Memorial takes place every third Sunday in May and is led by some 1,200 volunteer Candlelight Coordinators in 119 countries who host vigils for their communities.
The Candlelight Memorial is more than just a memorial. It is an opportunity to educate about AIDS, advocate for policy change, foster partnerships and community dialogue, and improve skills for community mobilization. With 33 million people estimated to be infected worldwide, the Candlelight serves as an important uniting intervention among civil society and their governments, breaking down social barriers, and giving hope to future generations.
The Candlelight Memorial program encourages governments and international leaders to improve policies that affect the conditions of affected communities. The Candlelight Memorial is committed to ending HIV/AIDS by raising awareness and advocating for the advancement of effective policies at all levels. The program has identified the following key issue areas as its platform around which it cultivates community advocacy through its events and activities:
Reduction of stigma and discrimination
Ensuring access to prevention, treatment and care
Increasing resources for HIV and AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria and other related issues
Promoting greater involvement of affected communities
• The Candlelight Memorial is a program of the Global Health Council.
• It’s the largest and oldest grassroots mobilization campaign for HIV/AIDS awareness in the world.
• The purpose is to honor all those affected by the AIDS pandemic, as well as to educate about HIV/AIDS, influence local and national policy makers, and create community dialogue about HIV/AIDS prevention, care and treatment.
• It’s led by local volunteer “Candlelight coordinators,” who host memorials for their communities worldwide.
• The Candlelight Memorial occurs on the third Sunday in May every year.
• In 2007, some 2,000 memorials were held in 119 countries.
• It began in 1983 in San Francisco, United States.
AIDS CANDLELIGHT MEMORIAL
1. We commend the PhilHealth Board Resolution Number 921 of 2006 “Approving the Outpatient HIV and AIDS Benefit” and we expect that the guidelines and implementation will happen by the end of 2008.
2. We call on the Men in Uniform to continuously provide their organized support in response to AIDS.
3. Ensure sustained access to treatment, care and support and not just dependent on external sources.
4. Reduce stigma and discrimination by urging the involvement of leaders by protecting the rights of affected groups and individuals and creating an enabling environment of both support and opportunity especially at the health care facilities.
5. Meaningful involvement of people living with HIV and AIDS by incorporating the voice of the affected communities in the formulation of policy as well as in the design and implementation of programs.