The International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies has set the ball rolling for a new five-year program to fight HIV/AIDS in southern Africa, to assist an estimated 11-million people in the region, known to be living with HIV.
The program has requisitioned the support of the World Health Organization and Southern Africa Information Dissemination Service to help them take their vision forward.
Mukesh Kapila, the special representative for HIV/AIDS for the federation, said, "Southern Africa is the epicenter of the global HIV/AIDS pandemic. It's the region with the highest incidence rates, prevalence rates. And though the world has promised many things to southern Africa, over many years, the problem has gone from bad to worse. And this problem cannot be solved by just sitting in coordination meetings and conference calls. You need to address in towns and villages, in communities, in families face to face...we have our volunteers present in every community in the region. We don't have to come in from outside. We are there already. And this alliance...is all about walking the last mile to get the job done in ensuring ordinary people...are better prepared and supported to deal with this catastrophe, HIV and AIDS."
In his opinion, despite advanced and evolved methods to combat HIV/AIDS, the poorer nations and vulnerable regions are still not able to reap the benefits of the technological advancements due to handicapped reach of these initiatives. Therefore the crux of this partnership is to walk the last mile in ensuring that informational and technological advancements, novel HIV treatments reach the poorer sections of the society.