SAfAIDS Executive Director’s Statement on World AIDS Day 2016
2016 has fast come and gone! We are now in December, the last month of 2016. As in past years, the 1st of December is a day when the whole world commemorates World AIDS Day. SAfAIDS joins the rest of the world today in standing together and walking the Ending AIDS by 2030 journey with zest. This is the day that we need to raise awareness about HIV and demonstrate our commitment and solidarity to all efforts being done in the global HIV response.
For us as a people to achieve the Ending AIDS by 2030 targets, more effort should be put in intensifying prevention, treatment and care interventions. UNAIDS (2016) reports that many of our countries are on track, with more than 18 million people being reported to be on life-saving HIV treatment. SAfAIDS therefore encourages our governments and funding partners to continue putting n resources to the HIV response so that the gains are not reversed. Let us continuously take stock of our achievements and challenges and re-ignite our efforts through introducing other exciting interventions for the achievement of the Ending AIDS by 2030 vision.
As SAfAIDS, we continue to re-engineer our programming and strengthening our key areas of strategic focus, putting more effort on young people’s Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights issues especially for Adolescent Girls and Young Women. These are the future leaders of tomorrow, and targeting our interventions at them will ensure the success of the broader goal of Ending AIDS by 2030. Interventions like the Ending Child Marriages Campaign that are being driven at African Union level must be embraced as they will go a long way in ensuring that as a continent, our efforts in closing the tap bear fruits.
Looking back, I am sure we are all proud of the achievements we have achieved so far. This does not mean we should rest on our laurels. More still needs to be done. Sustained funding is a necessity if we are to continue on the path of the gains achieved so far. The Treat All intervention will ensure improved health of all people living with HIV. This however needs sustained resources to ensure our health systems are in a position to meet the requirements. Our commitment and effort will make this a reality. Let us all commit to continue making a difference.
SAfAIDS: Knowledge for action - the power to make a difference!!
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