Mr. Mike Sangster, Managing Director of TotalEnergies, on behalf of Areola, made the disclosure at the Official Launch of the HIV / AIDS Awareness Campaign of the School Project for Secondary Schools in Lagos State.
The program was organized, NAPIMS and Partners – Prime, (formerly Peteobras), Sapetro and CNOO.
The day’s event focused on Mende High School, Mende High School, Immaculate Heart High School, and Immaculate Heart Comprehensive High School, all in Maryland, Lagos State.
The Nigerian News Agency reports that World AIDS Day was first celebrated in 1988 to draw attention to the HIV epidemic, come together to show support for people living with HIV, and remember those who have died from AIDS-related illnesses.
The theme for 2021 is: “End inequalities. End AIDS. Ending the pandemic “
According to UNAIDS, the 2021 theme joins a growing list of challenges that World AIDS Day has alerted people to around the world.
Sangster said: “Over the years, HIV / AIDS has grown into a major global health crisis.
“The disease has also become a real development challenge, especially for developing countries where young people, who are the most productive segment of the population, remain at risk.
“It is quite worrying that, so far, the prevalence rate is high due to the negligence and ignorance of the public.
“Not only to give back to society in meeting our Corporate Social Responsibility obligations, but also because we truly believe that when Nigeria prospers, our company prospers.”
According to him, to reduce the impact of the disease, the organization joins the United Nations and the World Health Organization as part of a broad-based coalition leading the fight against HIV / AIDS.
“It is for this reason that TotalEnergies Upstream Nigeria Ltd. extends its annual HIV awareness campaign to secondary schools.
”Young people are mainly vulnerable to HIV infection, especially when they are ignorant and engage in risky behaviors such as drug abuse and illicit exposures or rapes, worship activities, blood rituals, etc.
“According to the WHO, prevention is not only better than cure, but it is also cheaper and prevents complications.
“Therefore, I encourage all who are here today to carry the message of this campaign to their homes, friends, families, schoolmates and communities.
“HIV / AIDS is real and will continue to destroy our communities if we do not adopt behavioral changes that prevent its spread.
“Ending the HIV pandemic is indeed everyone’s voice,” he said.
Ms. Clementina Arubi, representing NAPIMS Group General Manager Bala Wunti, emphasized the existence of HIV / AIDS and its devastating impacts.
“We have come to let you know that HIV is real. Anyone can get HIV. They are not just adults.
“We want to make sure that as many Nigerian youth as possible are aware of this disease and know how to protect themselves.
“We believe that students his age should be aware of the disease.
“This is because we know that with knowledge comes the ability to make informed decisions to protect themselves, their families and their communities against HIV / AIDS,” he said.
Mr. Joseph Fatokun, Principal of Mende, Senior High School, thanked the organizations for organizing the awareness program.
Miss Precious Omoyibo, a JSS1 student from Immaculate Junior Comprehensive High School, Maryland, said she was happy that the program was organized to inform them about HIV / AIDS.
According to her, she had acquired a lot of knowledge from the information transmitted.
In addition, Mr. Okikiola Ibrahim, a JSS 1 student at Mende Junior High School, Maryland, also praised the awareness program.
He urged young children to protect themselves from actions that could lead to HIV / AIDS.
It also reports that the event featured theatrical performances while the organizations that organized the programming presented some kits to the institutions.
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