God, AIDS, Africa & HOPE

Reflections / Gedanken

POZ Magazine: AIDS Draws “Red Card” at World Cup

The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) has launched its “red card” campaign with the support of international soccer stars “to ensure an HIV-free generation by the 2014 FIFA World Cup” in Brazil, according to a UNAIDS statement. The goal is to eliminate the transmission of HIV from mother to child. The campaign title refers to the red card a soccer referee gives a player to eject him or her from a game.

The UNAIDS statement:

New global initiative at the FIFA World Cup shines spotlight on the elimination of mother-to-child transmission of HIV

JOHANNESBURG, 12 June 2010—A new campaign is using the power and outreach of football to unite the world around a common cause—preventing the transmission of HIV from mother to child. Launched today in South Africa by the UNAIDS Executive Director, Michel Sidibé, international musician Akon, UNAIDS Goodwill Ambassador and producer of the World Cup opening ceremony, Lebo M, UNAIDS National Goodwill Ambassador, Jimmie Earl Perry, and Kirsten Nematandani, President of the South African Football Association. The campaign aims to ensure an HIV-free generation by the 2014 FIFA World Cup to be held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Each year, an estimated 430 000 babies are born with HIV globally, the large majority in Africa. Over the course of a 90-minute football match, nearly 80 babies will become newly infected with HIV. In many parts of Africa, AIDS-related illness is the leading cause of death among infants and young children.

Through the campaign—backed by international football stars and UNAIDS Goodwill Ambassadors Michael Ballack of Germany and Emmanuel Adebayor of Togo—captains of 32 World Cup qualifying teams have been invited to sign the appeal: “From Soweto to Rio de Janeiro, give AIDS the red card and prevent babies from becoming infected with HIV.” Nineteen captains have already signed on, including host country South Africa and defending champion Italy.

“By the next football World Cup we can virtually eliminate HIV transmission to babies,” said UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibé who attended the campaign launch in South Africa. “Let us give AIDS the red card permanently.”

The lives of mothers and their babies can be saved through a combination of HIV testing and counselling, access to effective antiretroviral prophylaxis and treatment, safer delivery practices, family planning, and counselling and support for optimal infant feeding practices.

An estimated 33.4 million people are living with HIV worldwide. Since 2001, there has been a 17% reduction in new HIV infections globally. However, for every two people who access antiretroviral treatment, five more become newly infected with HIV.


UNAIDS New York | Richard Leonard | +1 646 666 8003 | LeonardR@unaids.org
UNAIDS South Africa | Sheba Okwenje | +127 11 517 1634 | okwenjeb@unaids.org

Source: http://www.poz.com/rssredir/articles/unaids_red_card_1_18571.shtml


Filed under: HIV and AIDS, HIV Prevention, HIV Treatment, Medical and Research, Society and living environment, , ,

3 Responses - Comments are closed.

  1. alivenkickn says:

    Wär schön wenn sich ein “Hohes Tier wie z.b. Beckenbauer, Platini” von der FIFA an der UnterschriftsAktion daran mit beteiligen würden.

  2. POZ Magazine: AIDS Draws ?Red Card? at World Cup…

    I found your entry interesting do I’ve added a Trackback to it on my weblog :)…

HIV, Development and HOPE – thoughts of a Catholic priest

Being a Roman - Catholic priest and working in the fields of HIV and social development in Africa has its challenges. You will find stories and reflections about my work, about the church, South Africa and Africa, about politics and whatever triggers my interest. You are most welcome to leave a comment or to get in touch with me. Blogging means to initiate thoughts and discussions and for the writer to formulate what is loosely running around in the heart and mind in need of being sorted and spoken out.

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