BAGUIO CITY – In commemoration with the thousands of people suffering from AIDS (Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome), the city government here spearheaded by the Health Services Office in coordination with the Baguio AIDS Watch Council (AWAC) will be one with the world in observing this year’s Candlelight Memorial celebration on May 20, Friday from 6 PM to 7:30 PM at the Malcolm Square People’s Park.
With this year’s theme “Engage, Educate, Empower”, various agencies which includes non-government organizations of Baguio, HSO, City Social Welfare and Development Office, Department of Health-CAR, Baguio Center for Young Adults, Family Planning Organizations of the Philippines, among others will join the said activity.
The AIDS Candlelight Parade will start from Banco de Oro Upper Session Road down to People’s Park where there will be a short film showing and program.
Highlighting the event will be the candle lighting activity to be led by mayor Mauricio Domogan, city officials as well as AWAC members.
In order to save lives of the generation and for the next generation, the said activity aims to raise awareness and consciousness to the public about the infection not only to the people of Baguio but of the whole nation as a whole.
Accordingly, since 2006, the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center which is among the identified National HIV Screening and Treatment Center has recorded 179 HIV cases wherein 65 are in the 25 to 34 years old bracket and 39 cases are in the 15 to 24 years of age.
HIV virus can be transmitted from one person to another through sexual contact, blood transfusion, sharing of needles, and from a mother to a child.
It is a life-long disease and many people with HIV worldwide are dying because they are not properly monitored and not given the right medication.
The public is then advised especially people who are asexually active and who have multiple partners as well as those who engage in risky sexual behaviors to have themselves screen, not only for themselves but also for their children.
By Jho Arranz