BY Roland Muma, 3:10pm September 19, 2014,

AIDS-Free Activities Look To Keep Youth Healthy in Cameroon




Peer Educators with Governor and youth

 Buea, Cameroon (Face2Face Africa) Since 2003, the First Lady of the West and Central Africa Country of the Republic of Cameroon Chantal Biya has been involved in several humanitarian activities through her non-governmental and humanitarian organization African Synergy that involves the recruitment of youths from college and universities from all 10 regions of the republic during summer holidays.

SEE ALSO: Cameroonian President, First Lady Give Gifts to Fleeing Nigerian Refugees

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The youths are taught to know their HIV/AIDS status, the proper use of condoms, abstaining from sex until marriage, encouraging youths to go to appropriate health centers when HIV positive, and enhancing the skills of youth on leadership in the fight against HIV and AIDS.

This year’s Holiday AIDS-Free Campaign, entitled “Youths, the Fight Against HIV-AIDS Continuous,” brought together some 104 peer educators in the town of Buea for three weeks. During the exercise, about 360 female condoms were distributed, more than 5,000 people were screened, and 41 percent of this number tested positive.

Showing gratitude to the peer educators for taking part in the activities, the Governor of the South West Region of the Republic Bernard Okala Bilai, on behalf of the First Lady, gave school packages, such as exercise books, pens, and food items, including attestations of participation, to peer educators.

Governor Bilai said, “We want this initiative to continue not only during the summer holidays, but that the peer educators who have gained a lot of experience while carrying out this exercise should also continue in the schools to educate their friends on the importance of prevention against HIV and AIDS.”

Some of the peer educators involved in the campaign spoke with Face2Face Africa saying, “Though the rains perturbed the smoothness of the exercise, there were also not sufficient kids for the exercise. We are, however, very grateful that the objectives set at the beginning were met.”

Another peer educator spoke to some of the challenges of trying to educate the youth, “Some of the people we met were very rude to us, insisting that we first give them condoms before they would listen to us. Others do not even know the difference between HIV and AIDS.”

Since the inception of this exercise in 2003, about 6,000 peer educators have been recruited and trained in the 10 regions of Cameroon, more than 9,000,000 persons have been sensitized, more than 1,249,982 educational talks have been organized, 2,500,000 male and female condoms have been distributed, and more than 200,000 persons have been screened.

Cameroon’s Ministry of Public Health coordinates the activities with the support of partners, such as UNAIDS, UNFPA, UNESCO, and more.

Finally, about 27 African first ladies are signatory members of African Synergy under the patronage of its founding president Chantal Biya.

SEE ALSO: Cameroon’s School of Penintentiary Administration Graduates Hundreds of Students

Last Edited by:Abena Agyeman-Fisher Updated: June 19, 2018


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