Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan (May 18, 2012) – As part of the Global Fund grants UNDP together with the associations of people living with HIV (PLHIV) organized several events dedicated to the World AIDS Memorial Day. This day is marked on the third Sunday of May to commemorate victims of AIDS and raise public awareness of issues related to HIV.
Marat Kaliev, Deputy Minister of Healthcare, Jyldyz Kurmanalieva, General Director of the National AIDS Centre, Anna Chernyshova, Head of the Global Fund Grants Implementation Unit, Burul Isaeva, Head of Association “Solidarity of PLHIV” and Evgenia Kalinichenko, Head of Association “Country network of PLHIV”, took part in a special press conference dedicated to the world AIDS Memorial Day.
Deputy Minister of healthcare noted an increase in the number of HIV-positive people in Kyrgyzstan. According to the AIDS Centre 4178 people were officially registered as people living with HIV as of May 1, 2012. The first case in Kyrgyzstan was registered in 1987 and it was a foreign student. In 1996 female citizen of Kyrgyzstan was found to be HIV positive. In the period of 1987 to 2012, 574 people died from HIV, 29 of them were children. Out of 574 people 203, including 10 children, died from AIDS, others from diseases related to HIV. Marat Kaliev underlined that currently Global Fund is the main donor of Kyrgyzstan in the fight with HIV.
Anna Chernyshova reported that the Global Fund is planning to give a $40 million grant for treatment and prevention of HIV. Special attention will be paid to programmes on eradication of stigma and discrimination against PLHIV. A Global Fund project shot a public service announcement titled “Let’s stop discrimination against HIV positive children” which is currently broadcasted on national TV channels. The video is aimed at changing views of society on HIV problems in Kyrgyzstan. Furthermore, the most popular radio stations “Kyrgyzstan obondoru” and “Retro FM” organized radio programmes dedicated to the World AIDS Memorial Day with participation of representatives of two PLHIV Associations, who talked about ways of HIV transmission/prevention and answered to listener’s questions. Radio station “Europe+” organized a so called “company day” and talked about Global Fund project activities.
On the same day Association “Solidarity of PLHIV” jointly with City AIDS Center organized a commemoration event on the Victory square of Bishkek under the motto “Judge not, SUPPORT! I KNOW! I SUPPORT! I JOIN!”. The main goal of the event was commemoration of AIDS victims, expressing solidarity in the fight against spreading HIV and support for people affected by the epidemic. Organizers tried to give as much information about HIV as possible and communicate the idea that each person can do something to solve the global problem of HIV and AIDS.
Each participant of the event had opportunity to say something and commemorate those who died from AIDS. People living with HIV also had an opportunity to speak.
Denis, 30 years old:
"I have been an injection drug user. At first, I thought that I would try once and then stop, but in fact it turned out quite differently. Later, I caught hepatitis "C", and then learned that I was HIV-positive. I am very sorry that I caused greatest pain to my mother, for which I beg her forgiveness. Only faith in God and prayer helped me to survive. Now I do not use drugs. Do not repeat my mistakes!"
During the event the organizers presented a slide-show with photos of famous people whose life was taken by AIDS.UNDP partners with people at all levels of society to help build nations that can withstand crisis, and drive and sustain the kind of growth that improves the quality of life for everyone. On the ground in 177 countries and territories, we offer global perspective and local insight to help empower lives and build resilient nations.