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Gender Inequality and HIV/AIDS #rocktheredpump

Hers is another of those faces I can’t forget. A woman, in her late 20s, somewhat educated, an HIV/AIDS patient. A disease she contracted because of her husband’s promiscuity. He died of the illness. She was thrown out of her marital home and disinherited by her inlaws. Left to make her own way with her little girl. The child, also a victim of the disease, contracted at birth. But did this woman give up? No. She found help. She made sure that she and her daughter got their medication. How did I meet her? She was a resource person for an HIV/AIDS call centre. Working for women with HIV/AIDS, spreading awareness, empowering other women with her example!

She was a woman to be admired, no doubt. But why did she have to go through so much? Because she was a woman!

Gender Inequality and HIV/AIDS is a subject that needs attention because every minute a young woman is newly infected with HIV.

Some of the aspects of gender inequality and HIV/AIDS are:

  • Women are not allowed to voice their opinions with regard to practising safe sex.
  • Violence against women increases their vulnerability to HIV/AIDS.
  • Lack of education and economic independence makes them opt for survival strategies that increase their chances of contracting the disease.
  • Women and children in emergency situations – war, famine, floods – lead to transactional sex and thus increase their vulnerability.
  • Lack of access to information, medical services in many countries.
  • Gender norms about masculinity. For example, homophobia which stigmatizes men having sex with men, and therefore putting their wives/female partners at risk.
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Today, is National Women and Girl’s HIV/AIDS Awareness Day in the US. One organization that is doing great work in this area is  The Red Pump Project®. This  is a nonprofit organization raising awareness about the impact of HIV/AIDS on women and girls. The idea is to empower, educate, and motivate action by boldly driving conversation online and offline around HIV prevention and issues related to sexual and reproductive health. The Red Pump serves as a symbol of empowerment representing the strength and courage of women affected by HIV/AIDS.

Here’s how you can get involved in this project –

Become a sponsor

Donate to the project

Submit your story

Buy a t-shirt.

Let’s #rocktheredpump today!

9 Comments

  1. G Angela G Angela March 12, 2015

    I am glad to read this post corinne, this is so true, I keep meeting women in both ICTC (integrated Counselling Testing Centre & PPTCT (prevention of Parent to Child Transmission)wherein for no fault of theirs become victims of HIV.. but there is hope for the pregnant women, wherein the just born baby is given a syrup called NVP at different times until 2 years of age, and the baby’s can be protected from getting infected from the mother to child. Being part of GFATM R7 (Global funding for AIDS,TB & Malaria) as supervisors to these centres it is really a sad state of affair. most of the times the husband will refuse to come for testing, and leave the women to fend for themselves, the in laws will blame the women for all the problems.. the counselors are good at these centres, and they link women to ART clinics where they can get their medicines regularly, the asha volunteers keep track of these women to help them to adhere to meds… Thank you for sharing …

  2. Irish Carter Irish Carter March 12, 2015

    I love this awareness campaign flooding the internet. It’s such an important cause for others to be made aware of. The story in the beginning was an eye opener and I really do hope that more awareness and support is provided to help women with HIV/AIDS.

    Have a great week and hope life is going great for you. Take care doll.

    Irish
    Irish Carter recently posted..How to Build a Great Relationship with Your kids – You Can Be a SuperMom!My Profile

  3. Debbie D. Debbie D. March 12, 2015

    Sad that women are still lagging so far behind in many parts of the world! 🙁 This sounds like a wonderful organization and I will certainly add a contribution to their cause. Thanks for the info, Corinne
    Debbie D. recently posted..PUGGLE LYNYRD SKYNYRD – A DOG WITH A CAUSEMy Profile

  4. Carol Cassara Carol Cassara March 11, 2015

    Thanks for this reminder. It’s easy to forget how things are in other parts of the world. We can’t give up our efforts. I spent 12 yrs as an HIV volunteer in Calif in the 80s and 90s. Sounds like so much work remains to be done, too.
    Carol Cassara recently posted..Do you hold the lion’s paw?My Profile

    • Corinne Rodrigues Corinne Rodrigues Post author | March 11, 2015

      Yes, plenty of work to be done. I’m happy to report that the Bill & Melinda Gates foundation is already doing a lot of work in this area, in India. But there’s so much more to do with changing mindsets and bringing awareness.

      I had no idea that you volunteered, Carol. You just went up another notch in my estimation
      Corinne Rodrigues recently posted..Be Realistic Plan For A Miracle #MicroblogMondaysMy Profile

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