Wednesday, 14 July 2010

AIDS 2010

Hi all, my name is Carly (the one on the right) and I’m a student Nurse from University of Manchester! I arrived in Vienna last night with Eliis, another young person selected for this opportunity, to attend the XVIII International AIDS conference.

I found out about this opportunity through the Student Stop AIDS Society and was lucky enough to be selected by UNICEF UK and Restless Development to attend the Youth pre-conference, the AIDS 2010 conference and a three-day advocacy training organised by Restless Development.

Inspired by a year volunteering in an East African orphanage, I applied wanting to do more to empower young people to campaign for universal access to sufficient education, treatment and care.

I believe advocacy is fundamental for change and I’m passionate about peer educating. Attending the AIDS conference in Vienna will provide knowledge, resources and networking opportunity for us to bring back to the UK to facilitate raising awareness.

This year is 10 years since world leaders made eight promises to create a fairer world. These promises, called the Millennium Development Goals, or MDGs as you will probably see them called in the papers, range from eradicating poverty and hunger to halving the number of people without access to safe drinking water and sanitation. One the MDGs, number 6, focuses specifically on HIV and AIDS, so I hope to find out more about the progress achieved so far at the conference.

Whilst at the conference Eliis and I will try to keep you updated of our time in Vienna, so keep an eye on this blog!

Hello, I’m Eliis (the one on the left) and I work in a sexual health clinic in Newham (East London) as a peer educator, and with the Terence Higgins Trust.

I’ve done a lot of youth work in the past and taken part in many projects on young people’s sexual health awareness and discrimination. I personally feel very close to any project to do with these issues and feel very privileged to be attending the AIDS 2010 conference in Vienna!

I’ve also been involved in World AIDS Day events in Newham and working on anti-homophobia campaigns has taken me around Europe.