Engaging Muslim, Christian and other religious leaders on HIV/AIDS and social problems in (West) Africa.
This workshop is planned from 1-3 December 2014 in Accra, Ghana, to enable religious organisations and others involved in HIV/AIDS initiatives in (West) Africa to develop ways of working together to sensitize people and promote dialogue on HIV risks and other social problems in communities. The workshop will bring together about 20 participants and will involve lectures, panel discussions, peer education, etc., and is being organised to commemorate the World AIDS Day, which falls on 1 December every year.

The objective of the 3-day workshop is to sensitize and educate people on HIV and AIDS through religious beliefs ((Islam, Christianity, and traditional religion) and understandings of life and lifestyles in the light of national and international best practices, such as HIV prevention, antiretroviral drugs (ARVs) and treatment, HIV counselling, care for AIDS patients, HIV and human rights, AIDS advocacy and activism, as well as showing compassion and zero stigma.

In (West) Africa, faith plays a key role in everyday life for many people, and can possibly enhance cohesion in society. HIV/AIDS in Africa does not exist in isolation; it is associated with other problems. So, if faith can help address, e.g., the stigma and discrimination surrounding HIV and find ways to reduce new infections, not only will this develop support for people living with HIV but it can also assist in prevention strategies at local levels and sensitize people on realities of the virus, gender, sex, and life in general. This workshop will be the first time in Ghana that the three major religions have come together in HIV/AIDS advocacy.

The workshop is an essential part of the project: “Religious Beliefs and HIV in Akan Society (Ghana)”, based at The Nordic Africa Institute (NAI) in Uppsala, Sweden, and being conducted by Perpetual Crentsil, Senior Researcher at NAI.

It will not be a strictly academic workshop; instead, since it aims to promote dialogue between research and policy making, the workshop will feature both academic researchers and persons working or interested in policy and practice in the HIV/AIDS field, such as representatives of governments, health institutions, and NGOs.

The workshop will be organized in collaboration with some non-governnmental organisations (NGOs) in Ghana and is expected to bring together Muslim and Christian leaders, traditional healers, HIV Counsellors, health personnel and experts, government officials/policy makers, media personnel, HIV positive persons, AIDS patients, researchers, etc. Participants will be drawn from all over Ghana and possibly other West African countries.



World AIDS Day 2011 march by PACE
The Partners for African Community Empowerment (PACE) organised a procession at Nkawkaw in the Kwahu District, Eastern Region and Nanton in the Nanton District, Northern Region of Ghana to commemorate the AIDS Day on 1 December 2011.
It was a one-day procession which was undertaken by people of all walks of life—men, women, the youth, HIV-positive persons, AIDS patients, sympathisers and others committed to contributing to proactive responses and HIV/AIDS initiatives in Ghana.
People marched through the principal streets of Nkawkaw and Nanton carrying placards with inscriptions reflecting the objectives of the project. With music, the procession lasted about four hours after which participants were addressed by speakers and experts on HIV/AIDS, health personnel and government spokespersons.
To make the event more practical, some persons living with HIV staged a drama to share their experiences or testimonies with the participants at the gathering more than 500 people took part in both events. Well-organized groups and their leaders from the churches, hairdressers association, seamstress associations, market women etc. took part in the event.

Huge visibility was created about both events through the various mass media outlets—print, radio, and television. Local FM stations gave considerable air-time about the events, and newspapers too gave prominence of the activities in their reportage. Banners and posters on bill boards were showcased the programme.




Religions As Key In Hiv/Aids Responses In Africa
1,400 people test for HIV-AIDS at Nkawkaw.2011
International Workshop On AIDS to be organised by PACE from the 1st - 3rd of December 2014 to be held at Korkdam Hotel, Achimota, Accra.