June 25, 2008
Muslim Leaders Target HIV Stigma
A workshop held June 16-18 in San'a', Yemen, helped 25 Islamic preachers, along with female religious health advisers, learn to combat HIV-related stigma and discrimination through their teachings, the Yemen Observer reports (yobserver.com, 6/24).
According to the article, each awareness session included presentations, role-playing, discussions and group work to examine HIV from an Islamic perspective. Participants were assigned to develop awareness-raising speeches they can utilize at their religious functions.
“It is very important to understand and address HIV/AIDS as a social, economic and a development issue, through Islamic teachings that provide a highly relevant framework for HIV/AIDS prevention and thus can reduce stigma and discrimination against people living with the virus,” said Irfan Akhtar, HIV/AIDS Coordinator of Progressio, a UK-based international advocacy organization that helped conduct the workshop.
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