World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Food Agency Adds AIDS Protection to Arsenal

From Sex Workers to Truckers, UN Food Agency Adds AIDS Protection to Arsenal

New York, Nov 29 2005 3:00PM

Sex workers, truck drivers, store personnel and port workers now all have access to information, counselling on HIV and treatment for sexually transmitted diseases where and when they need it most, thanks to an innovative new project launched by the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) and its partners in Malawi.

Aware that its own transport workers might be contributing to the spread of HIV, WFP and TNT, the global mail, express and logistics company, have set up the first of its Wellness Centres at the Mwanza border crossing to give truckers, and the communities they pass through, access to life-saving information on how to avoid contracting HIV and passing it on to others.

"Long nights, young men far from home, and an abundance of poor young women makes this a perfect location for HIV to spread – and an ideal place to intervene to stop it," WFP Country Director Dom Scalpelli said.

"That is why Mwanza was the first place WFP and its partners chose to install the 'Muyende Bwino Pit Stop', the first Wellness Centre in Malawi," he added.

In response to the dramatic food crisis currently gripping Malawi, trucks contracted by WFP are among the dozens of heavy vehicles that queue up every night at Mwanza, Malawi's busiest border crossing, handling 70 per cent of all road freight into the southern African country.

Since January, some 600 WFP trucks have crossed the border on their way to and from Mozambique, Zimbabwe and South Africa.

The Swedish International Development Agency and the Malawian Ministry of Health are also participating in the project. Treatment for minor ailments and sexually transmitted diseases is available, as well as referrals to voluntary counselling, testing and treatment for HIV. The centres are open when their clients need them most.

WFP is mounting a relief operation in Malawi to reach more than 4 million people no longer able to feed themselves due to drought and the government's dwindling ability to cope as farmers, workers and civil servants continue to succumb to the deadly AIDS pandemic.

"AIDS has cut a huge swathe through Malawian society. In a country where poverty is endemic and drought a regular feature of rural life, the effects of the pandemic have been truly catastrophic," Mr. Scalpelli said.

WFP is a major transport provider to poor countries, including 21 of the 25 countries worst-affected by AIDS. With more than 5,000 trucks carrying food to hungry people in more than 80 countries, plus countless workers in ports, warehouses, railways and airports, its contractors and staff work along the corridors where HIV rates are among the highest in the world.

And since they travel to some of the most remote places in the world, they can contribute to the spread of the disease. HIV/AIDS prevention and awareness activities are provided to all of WFP's staff worldwide, and offered to transport workers in places like Ethiopia and Myanmar.


ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>

ALSO:

Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>

ALSO:


Gordon Campbell: On Bidding Bye Bye To Boris

Boris Johnson’s exit from the contest for Conservative Party leadership supports the conspiracy theory that he never really expected the “Leave” option to win the referendum – and he has no intention now of picking up the poisoned chalice that managing the outcome will entail... More>>

ALSO:

Mexico: Violence And Repression Of Teachers

The member organizations of Network for Peace express our indignation over the acts of repression that the Mexican State has carried out, through the police forces... In Chiapas, Guerrero and Oaxaca, the conflict has resulted in murders of teachers and civilians as well as hundreds of wounded and dozens of people arrested. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Britain's Pleas For Mercy

So… Boris Johnson is promising that he won't be holding a snap general election, if he's chosen as the next UK Conservative Party leader. Reportedly, he is even making that promise a feature of his leadership campaign, since a vote for Boris would therefore mean (wink wink) that his colleagues wouldn't have to risk their jobs and face the wrath of the British public until 2020. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news