Tuesday, December 1, 2009
World Aids Day
Today is World AIDS Day, a time when people around the world recognize the importance of awareness, prevention, and working towards a cure. Considering AIDS epidemic in parts of Africa, it seemed appropriate to take some time to discuss AIDS and how it effects the people of Sierra Leone and the surrounding areas.
First, take a look at these statistics on HIV/AIDS for the U.S. (click on the that says "HIV AIDS" to go directly to the stats) and for Sierra Leone. Keep in mind that Sierra Leone has a population of about 5.5 million while the U.S. is closer to 300 million, so while the numbers for Sierra Leone are smaller, the percentage of people affected by HIV/AIDS is greater in Sierra Leone than the U.S.
Here are two more links taking a look at the number of people who have to deal with HIV/AIDS in their lives here in Maine, specifically, and a look at how many people in sub-Saharan Africa (where Sierra Leone is located) suffer from AIDS.
This is an article written in 2001 about Sierra Leone's fight against AIDS at the end of it's civil war (the one Ishmael, our main character in A Long Way Gone, fought in) and here is another article about what Sierra Leone is doing now to fight AIDS.