International AIDS Memorial Day 2007 – Sunday, 20 May
KUALA LUMPUR, 20 April 2007 - HIV is threatening childhood like never before. Globally, children under 15 account for 1 in 6 AIDS-related deaths and 1 in 7 new global HIV infections. A child under 15 dies of an AIDS-related illness every minute of every day, a young person aged 15 to 24 gets infected with HIV every 15 seconds while 15 million children are already orphaned by AIDS.
In Malaysia, new HIV infections are doubling every three years with an average of 17 people testing HIV-positive daily. Of the 74,000 people already infected in Malaysia as of June 2006, almost forty (40) per cent occur in young people below the age of 29. Mother-to-child transmission of HIV has increased from 0.2% new infections in 1991 to 1.2% in 2005.
More than twenty years into the AIDS epidemic and HIV/AIDS shows no signs of weakening its grip on human society. The number of children, adolescents and young people in the path of the pandemic and at risk and in need of protection continues to rise daily.
AIDS is depriving children and young people of many of their human rights – of the care, love and affection of their parents; of their teachers and other role models; of education and options for the future; and of protection against exploitation and abuse.
This year’s International AIDS Memorial Day (IAMD) theme "Leading the Way to a World Without AIDS" calls on the world to act now, urgently and decisively, to ensure that the next generation of children is AIDS-free.
UNICEF’s experiences from around the world demonstrates that prevention interventions targeting young people could significantly help curtail the AIDS epidemic. These interventions include:
IAMD is among the largest and oldest grassroots mobilisation campaigns for HIV/AIDS awareness in the world. Now in its 24th year, IAMD has become more than just a memorial to commemorate the lives lost to AIDS. It provides opportunities to educate people about HIV/AIDS; inform policymakers about steps to take in stopping the disease; and create community dialogue about prevention, care and treatment.
To learn more about International AIDS Memorial Day, please visit www.candlelightmemorial.org.
BROADCASTERS: Broadcast quality videos
International AIDS Memorial Day 2007
Sunday, 20 May 2007
Unite against AIDS
• The Malaysian Launch