This week in Haiti banners in the streets, posters at health institutions and community organizations, SMS and robocalls and radio spots airing on national radio are all sharing the same message: Sida! Mwen pap pran. Mwen pap bay. (AIDS! I’m not catching it. I’m not passing it on.)
Launched at the beginning of November and continuing through World AIDS Day on December 1 and the month of December, this targeted communication campaign is part of the National AIDS Control Program’s (NACP) efforts to create a collective, national response to the AIDS pandemic .
The campaign’s goals are threefold: encourage Haitians to participate in the fight against HIV and AIDS, promote behaviors that reduce the risk of HIV transmission and strengthen support for people living with HIV.
Three new radio spots underscore the message that individual Haitians have a responsibility to prevent the transmission of HIV.
In the “AIDS! I’m not catching it” radio spot, a female voice opens saying, “My life is my own. I have to protect it. […] I’m not taking any risks so the AIDS virus won’t get inside.” A male speaker continues, “My life is my own. I have to protect it so the AIDS virus won’t get inside me. That’s why I’m controlling my sexual activity. I’m not hooking up with a bunch of partners right and left.”
The “AIDS! I’m not passing it on!” radio spot emphasizes the role that HIV positive individuals must play in preventing the spread of the virus. A male voice states, “I’ve been living with the AIDS virus now for three years. When I found out, I thought my life was over. But, thanks to the support of friends, family and coworkers, and also thanks to the medications I always take every day, I’m beginning to love life again. […] I’m not giving my wife AIDS or anyone else. With all my strength, with all my conviction, I say: AIDS! I’m not passing it on!”
The radio spots, banners and posters were developed by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health Center for Communication Programs (JHU∙CCP) in close coordination with the Ministry of Health National AIDS Control Program and PSI. JHU∙CCP leads the EVIH-T project, a USAID-funded AIDS prevention project in partnership with Jhpiego and Save the Children.
The campaign partners and NACP are confident that through the efforts of this widespread campaign, the goals of “Zero new HIV infections, Zero discrimination, Zero AIDS related deaths” can be realized in Haiti.