Name of the activity: World-AIDS-Day Awareness Activities

Country/NMO: Germany (bvmd)

Program: HIV/AIDS & Other STIs

 

Contact information: [email protected]

Type of the activity: Education

 

General description:

25 of our local committees participated in this years campaign for the World AIDS day and prepared a lot of different activities to raise awareness.
Our local SCORAngels didn’t shy away from putting in a lot of effort in organising film events, fundraising endeavours, challenging trivia games and opportunities to get wasted on mulled wine + gorge oneself on waffles and baked goods. Additionally, our easternmost group in Greifswald organised a candle march, while the centre of Germany was adorned with a gigantic red ribbon at the Madgeburg campus tower.
Additionally our local committee in Jena organised a weekend-long workshop focusing on HIV/AIDS as well as sexual violence one week ahead of World-AIDS-Day.
We managed to distribute a considerable amount of condoms, lollipops and ribbons while raising awareness for this important topic.
All of this was topped off by a big red ribbon signed by SCORAngels and students from all over Germany at the bvmd federal congress held on the first weekend of December.
All in all we think our campaign went quite well and we hope to coordinate our local committees better and plan to work out objectives and indicators of success more thoroughly beforehand to have an even bigger over all impact in the future.

Focus area:

Prevention of all STIs or are specific STIs, STI testing, Removing stigmatization and empowering people living with HIV, Raising awareness among the general public about STIs, STI education or training for future health-care professions

Problem statement:

While the numbers of yearly new HIV-infections are being constantly at an overall low rate (3.100 in 2016) in Germany and the number of new HIV-infections in the group of man who have sex with man is decreasing, the number of new HIV-infections in the group of heterosexual men and women is on the rise (rising since 2010 so 750 in 2016). Moreover the estimated number of not diagnosed HIV-infections is still rising (2016 12.700 of overall 88.400 infected in Germany). One of the main goals is to increase the rate of (early) diagnosis and strengthen the access and the usage of treatment to reach the 90-90-90 goal of the UNAIDS as soon as possible. Therefore we need to increase the awareness (especially in the heterosexual population) of the easily available testing opportunities and on the importance of getting tested.
[Reference: https://www.rki.de/DE/Content/Infekt/EpidBull/Archiv/2017/Ausgaben/47_17.pdf?__blob=publicationFile]

While decreasing, discrimination and stigma in healthcare are still very much present today. Examples are writing “HIV” (or other indicators) on the front of a health record for everybody to see, being isolated in a single bedroom, being treated after everybody else (at the end of the shift) to “prevent” HIV-infections.
[Reference: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3948597/]

Even 10 years after the Swiss Statement (people with an undetectable viral load are not infectious when having unprotected sex) the protective effect of proper medical treatment of an HIV-infection is still very unknown, not only to the general public, but to healthcare providers as well. Only 10% of the population knows about the protective effect (study in 2017 by the “Bundeszentrale für gesundheitliche Aufklärung” – Ministry of Health). Furthermore many people have false knowledge on the transmission of HIV, for example thinking one could get infected by using the same toilet or handkerchief.
[Reference: https://www.bzga.de/forschung/studien-untersuchungen/studien/hiv-sti-praevention/]

* We apologise that we were not able to provide most of the data and statistics in English.

Target groups and beneficiaries:

We had two main target groups for this activity. The first being medical students and with them their future patients indirectly benefiting from it. The general public, especially the younger generations, being the second one.

Objectives and indicators of success:

– knowledge in the general public about HIV transmission (number of people reached, number of information material distributed)
– knowledge in medical students about HIV transmission (number of people reached, number of information material distributed)
– raising funds for the “Deutsche AIDS-Hilfe” (sum of the fundraising activities)
– increase the number of protected intercourse (number of condoms distributed)

Methodology:

– fundraising for the “Deutsche AIDS-Hilfe” (association for structural prevention, for those threatened or affected by HIV/AIDS, umbrella organisation for AIDS service organisations in Germany)
– trivia games on HIV/AIDS for medical students and/or the general public
– film events + discussions
– distribution of condoms
– distribution of AIDS-ribbons
– distribution of information material (e.g. on AIDS/HIV, on AIDS service organisations)
– distributions of lollipops (education on the low risk of HIV transmission, while stating that using a condom or dental dam protects from STIs)
– lectures for medical students
– panel discussion (University of Würzburg)
– candle walk (University of Greifswald)
– gigantic ribbon on university campus tower (University of Magdeburg)
– big red ribbon signed by a lot of our SCORAngels at our annual bvmd federal congress

Plans for evaluation:

We evaluated via a google form survey.
We asked which local committees took part in the activities, which activities where put in effect, how many condoms and lollies where distributed and how many people where reached by average.

We came to the realisation, that our questions were not specific enough and that we did not think about our indicators of success thoroughly enough beforehand.