The Isle of Man HIV Support Group is pleased to announce that to mark World AIDS Day 2015 various Isle of Man landmarks and Government buildings will be lit up red. These include Government Office ‘the Wedding Cake’, the Tower of Refuge, Ramsey Swing Bridge, Ramsey Court House, Douglas Power Station, and weather permitting the Sunken Gardens on Douglas promenade.
World AIDS Day is held on the 1st December each year and is an opportunity for people worldwide to unite in the fight against HIV, show their support for people living with HIV and to commemorate people who have died. World AIDS Day was the first ever global health day, held for the first time in 1988.
Over 100,000 people are living with HIV in the UK. Globally there are an estimated 34 million people who have the virus. Despite the virus only being identified in 1984, more than 35 million people have died of HIV or AIDS, making it one of the most destructive pandemics in history.
Today, scientific advances have been made in HIV treatment, there are laws to protect people living with HIV and we understand so much more about the condition. Despite this, each year in the UK around 6,000 people are diagnosed with HIV, people do not know the facts about how to protect themselves and others, and stigma and discrimination remain a reality for many people living with the condition.
World AIDS Day is important because it reminds the public and Government that HIV has not gone away – there is still a vital need to raise money, increase awareness, fight prejudice and improve education particularly on the Island.
World AIDS Day is an opportunity to show support and solidarity to the millions of people living with HIV. Wearing a red ribbon is one simple way to do this. Red ribbons have been provided to the Isle of Man Police Force and various Government departments for staff to wear if they so choose. The ribbons will also be available at various points around the island free of charge.
For further information regarding World AIDS Day, including how you or your company can get involved please contact Tony Watterson on 07624 332061
Anyone suffering from, living with or supporting someone with HIV or AIDS can contact the Isle of Man HIV Support Group on their confidential hotline 07624 427195