Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Positive Bodies


Read more about this project here.

These are body maps made by HIV positive people in Kenya, India and Thailand. Body mapping is a therapeutic exercise that can be used to help people living with HIV to process the pycho-social elements of the disease. At a time when the body may be a source of shame or of pain, it is a way to reconnect the spiritual and physical that exists in all of us. The beautiful self-portraits are life-size and are made during a complete workshop that addresses the stigma the painters may be facing from their families and community.




























Monday, September 12, 2011

North Star Alliance



The North Star Alliance is a health organization that focuses on the health of African truck drivers. Truck drivers are an at-risk group for HIV as being away from home and family can result in risky sexual behavior, like having sex with sex workers, who are also at risk for HIV.

The North Star Alliance is setting up a network of Roadside Wellness Centers to address the health needs of drivers along some of Africa´s major international highways.

I found these postcards on a recent trip in South Africa.









Related Post:

No-Man´s Land

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Good Catholics Use Condoms



From their website: "Condoms4Life is an unprecedented worldwide public education effort to raise awareness about the devastating effect of the bishops’ ban on condoms. The campaign was launched on World AIDS Day 2001 with the display of billboards and ads in subways and newspapers saying, “Banning Condoms Kills.”



I really like the idea of this campaign. In fact, I agree with every line of these posters - until the bit about thanking Pope Benedict, for anything. To state that the Pope really believes that condoms saves lives is giving him a little too much credit.

In 2009, on his way to Cameroon, the Pope said "HIV/AIDS is tragedy that cannot be overcome by money alone, that cannot be overcome through the distribution of condoms, which can even increase the problem".

Then, in 2010, the Pope made these comments: "She (the Church) of course does not regard it (use of condoms) as a real or moral solution, but, in this or that case, there can be nonetheless, in the intention of reducing the risk of infection, a first step in a movement toward a different way, a more human way, of living sexuality."

A Catholic commenter, Austen Ivereigh, clarified the comments: "If the intention is to prevent transmission of the virus, rather than prevent contraception, moral theologians would say that was of a different moral order."

So, if your intention is to avoid spreading disease, not avoiding pregnancy, it is somehow a more humane sexuality. But it is not totally condoned either. None of this really makes me want to thank the Pope for expressing his opinions on condoms and HIV. It´s clear that he still holds the belief that all sex should be for procreation, and that is dangerous too.

In any case, I think the campaign is interesting as it tries to reassure Catholics that there isn´t actually anything wrong with using condoms - even if that isn´t exactly what the Pope said.

InSpot.org: In English

Two years ago, I posted about inspot.org, a site you can use to inform partners about their risk of having an STI. For example, if you have herpes and want to warn an ex, but are too embarrassed to contact him/her directly, inspot.org will send that person an anonymous email telling they may be at risk and where they can get tested.

I think this site is great as it promotes positive behavior - warning someone that they may be at risk, or even putting their future partners at risk - but also allows anonymity, which is very important in the case of STIs.








Related Posts:

InSpot.org: En Français
InSpot.org: En Español

InSpot.org: En Español

Two years ago, I posted about inspot.org, a site you can use to inform partners about their risk of having an STI. For example, if you have herpes and want to warn an ex, but are too embarrassed to contact him/her directly, inspot.org will send that person an anonymous email telling they may be at risk and where they can get tested.

I think this site is great as it promotes positive behavior - warning someone that they may be at risk, or even putting their future partners at risk - but also allows anonymity, which is very important in the case of STIs.

You can even send the email in Spanish or French. Here´s what the Spanish versions look like:






Related Post:

Send an HIV-Positive Post Card

InSpot.org

InSpot.org: En Français



Two years ago, I posted about inspot.org, a site you can use to inform partners about their risk of having an STI. For example, if you have herpes and want to warn an ex, but are too embarrassed to contact him/her directly, inspot.org will send that person an anonymous email telling they may be at risk and where they can get tested.

I think this site is great as it promotes positive behavior - warning someone that they may be at risk, or even putting their future partners at risk - but also allows anonymity, which is very important in the case of STIs.

You can even send the email in Spanish or French. Here´s what the French versions look like:







Related Post:

Send an HIV-Positive Post Card

InSpot.org