Basseterre, St. Kitts, November 30, 2016 (SKNIS): By the simple act of wearing red on World AIDS Day (Thursday, December 01), members of the general public can show support for persons infected and affected by the HIV virus and actively take part in the World AIDS Campaign activities coordinated by the National AIDS Secretariat in the Ministry of Health.

 Dubbed Red Day by the Secretariat, tomorrow (Thursday, December 01) will also feature staff wearing red along with specially-made red ribbon pin-ons, the Ministry of Health’s entrance being decorated in red, as well as staff and general public being encouraged to take part in a “Hands Up” for Prevention selfie photo-shoot.  High school students are also encouraged to wear a red shirt and take part in the photo-shoot.

 The latter activity feeds into the theme of this year’s campaign “Hands Up for HIV Prevention,” and involves individuals writing a practical HIV prevention method on one palm, raising that hand and taking a selfie with the palm showing one way in which HIV can be prevented.  Selfies should be sent tosk.healthpromounit@gmail.com.  The most creative photos will be sent to the Pan Caribbean Partnership Against HIV/AIDS (PANCAP) Unit and will be published in the organisation’s regional newsletter.

 Thursday, December 01, is also Testing Day and HIV Point of Care (POC) Rapid Testing will be used.  This involves the removal of a pin-prick of blood and having results returned in 30 to 45 minutes.  Persons who come to take the test and are wearing a red top and have taken part in the “Hands Up” for Prevention Selfie photo-shoot will be given a water bottle.

 A Condom Drive is scheduled for December 02 in Independence Square from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and will feature condom displays, placement demonstrations and giveaways.  Persons wearing a red top who have taken part in the “Hands Up” for Prevention Selfie photo-shoot will be given a “Mardi Gras” condom pouch.  Limited HIV Testing will also be available upon request for those persons who missed getting their test on the previous day.

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