December 1st marks World Aids Day. Although recent news calls the AIDS "crisis" over, there are an estimated 33.4 million people worldwide who are HIV positive. That's pretty much the population of Canada. That's a lot of people living with the disease. The good news for a lot of those people is that they are living with the disease instead of dying from it. Yes, they are still dying earlier in life and there are still a lot of people who don't have access to the best care available (in fact, apparently about 5 million of them don't have access to treatment at all), but it isn't as much of "death sentence" it once was.
Supporting World AIDS day may just be a blog post, or wearing a ribbon, or a donation to a local AIDS charity...but isn't it nice that the world is talking about it more than it used to? A lot of progress has been made and hopefully will continue to make even bigger strides in the parts of the world that needs it the most. There is still a lot of social stigma in many parts of the world and in many circles even in parts of the world where the stigma has mostly been lifted. As I said before, there are still about 5 million people that don't have access to treatment. And there are countries (and institutions) who would rather stick their heads in the sand preach abstinence only instead of accepting reality and making something as simple as a condom an accepted means of keeping people healthy.
If you are a Starbucks drinker, apparently 5 cents (I know, not all that much, but perhaps something is better than nothing) of all "fancy" coffees sold tomorrow will go toward the (RED) charity that supports AIDS related work in Africa. Alternatively, there are many other ways to help out. Check out the world AIDS day website or the site for your local AIDS foundation.
Hope you all have a wonderful day. It is hard to believe that it is already December!