National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day
It is celebrated annually on the 20th March; National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day is observed to educate people about HIV/AIDS and spread awareness, and promote testing and treatment to prevent it.
|2022||20th March||Sunday||United States|
|2023||20th March||Monday||United States|
|2024||20th March||Tuesday||United States|
Why National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day
Human immunodeficiency virus or HIV is one type of lentivirus that targets the immunity system. It is believed that it originated from chimps and then transferred to humans. It is because the scientist in 1999 found a strain of Simian Immunodeficiency Virus (SIV) in chimpanzee that was almost similar to HIV. It is assumed that in the early 1920s, HIV crossed from chimpanzees to humans in the Democratic Republic of Congo, as the hunters hunted chimps for food, and maybe from that, an SIV infected chimp started the chain of HIV.
The first verified case of HIV was being reported in 1959; it was a man from Kinshasa in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Around those times, DR Congo was full of transport mediums like roads, railways, and rivers, and besides that, the area also had a growing sex trade. The high population and the sex trade explains how HIV spread so quickly. And by 1980, half of the infected in the Democratic Republic of Congo was outside the area and further spreading HIV unknowingly.
There is a misconception that people have; they believe that HIV started in the 1980s in the USA, but it was just around that time when people first became aware of HIV. In the year 1981, few cases of a rare disease were reported, the main cause was unknown, and no one knew that this dangerous disease was spreading. The disease was first reported among gay men in NYC and California, but later, in 1982, scientists observed that the disease was also spreading across hemophiliacs and heroin users. In September 1982, the disease was finally named AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome).
To this date, many persons don’t know that they have HIV, and it spreads unknowingly. In different areas of the world, people still don’t know properly about HIV and how to deal with it; there are so many misconceptions regarding this topic. That’s why it is very important to aware of the situation and every aspect of this disease.
March 20 is the Native HIV/AIDS awareness day, and it is observed to remember those who have passed and give support to those who have currently affected by HIV. This day specifically brings an opportunity to call for increased testing resources and for improved support for increasing treatment and health care options. Volunteers and peoples raise awareness of HIV and AIDS risks to native communities and how to prevent it. Especially bursting the myths about AIDS and reduce stigma, fear, discrimination, and homophobia in rural communities.
How Can We Observe National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day
- Attend the events – originations such as Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and National Native Capacity Building Assistance Network promote this day by organizing various community events and issue press releases, display posters, etc. you can attend these events and give support to them.
- Raise awareness – you can encourage native people to get educated, help them to learn more about HIV/AIDS and how it can impact their lives.
- Join the campaign – You can join campaigns that stop HIV stigma and promote HIV testing, prevention, and treatment. Campaigns like these can bring about the change which is very much needed.
- Share on Social media – you can click pictures that describe the significance of the day or can share display posters about HIV awareness on social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, and don’t forget to add tags like #NNHAAD to get National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day content trending.
Interesting Facts On National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day:
Here are some interesting facts
- According to the CDC, diagnosed HIV infections among Native people are proportional to their population size.
- As many as 26 % of American Indian/ Alaska Native people don’t even know that they have HIV infection. Over 1.1 million cases are there in us, but almost 1 in 6 don’t know they have it.
- More than 35 million people living with HIV infection around the globe.
- Since 1981 over 30 million people have died from HIV, and the number was 1.7 million in 2011 alone.
- Every 9.5 minutes, some are diagnosed with HIV positive in the United States.
History of National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day:
The first observance of National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day was held on 20th March 2007, the first day of spring. In October 2006, the Native CBA Network presented a resolution to the National Congress of American Indians about the seriousness of HIV/AIDS and why show we observe NNHAD.