Youth Stop AIDS Speaker Tour 2018!
2018 is a big year for Youth Stop AIDS, we plan to demand extra funding from DFID for AIDS medication and education in February, as well as bombard the Amsterdam Government meeting with all things powerful and youth-led to make sure our MPs are saying the right things in aspect to funding for HIV/AIDS.
|Kennedy, 25 from Kenya.|
We had the pleasure of hearing Channan, aged 18 from the UK, Kennedy, aged 25 from Kenya and Aled, 29 from the UK. Each inspirational young speaker had a unique perspective on living life with HIV, from a Kenyan activist who was kicked out his home and forced into sex work, to an 18-year-old female vlogger overcoming health challenges & stigma to be a leading activist.
AIDS is still one of the biggest killers of young people globally, marginalised groups like sex workers are 10 times more at risk of HIV compared to the general population. But these figures do not tell the full story and having these incredible stories shared really motivates you to take action, and learn that AIDS is no longer a death sentence, and new HIV infections are easily preventable. With serious political willpower and funding, we can end AIDS by 2030.
Kennedy opened up the presentation with a moving story of his life in Kenya. As a homosexual man living in the Global South, he was shamed for his sexuality, and could never understand it properly, forced out of his home without a full education, Kennedy was forced into sex work at the capital (Nairobi). After numerous beatings, gang rape and violence, Kennedy felt like his only option was to go home. After finding out he was diagnosed with HIV it changed his life forever.
Kennedy is just one of the millions who suffer from an internal battle with their sexuality, by heightening the issue with sex work as the only option, Kennedy was facing a death sentence. Yet this inspirational man failed to give up, he received the medication he needed and knew he had to tell his story and help people. He started up a campaign in his local village, which only grew and became more successful. Now he is touring the UK and proving to all of us everywhere that #itaintover!
|Channan, 18, UK|
Channan fought for her right to speak, and she became an activist to show others that it is okay to talk about it. She single handily changed opinions of hundreds, taught and inspired her peers, even started her own Youtube channel to inspire more people on what life is really like with HIV.
|Aled, 29, UK|
The speaker tour was one of the most emotional events you can attend, it doesn't sugar coat it, but gives you the hard hitting reality. It proves how important funding is for projects to help others, with enough of us standing up and helping we can officially end AIDS.
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A HUGE thank you to all the amazing speakers for sharing their personal tales, and to the Youth Stop AIDS team for all the great work!