Make your own free website on Tripod.com
 

ABURI GIRLS SECONDARY SCHOOL

Home   Aburi Girls    Accra Academy    Armed Forces   Yaa Asantewaa    St. Augustine's    Chemu Sec   West Africa


PARTICIPATING STUDENTS

Lovia Ashong
Eunice Osei-Poku
Jemima Owoodo
Rosemary Dzikunu
Yvonne Osei-Mensah
Belinda Adopka

 1st EDUCATIONAL GOAL: BASIC FACTS

 

1. (a)      What is HIV?

          HIV[Human Immuno deficiency Virus] is the virus that causes AIDS

   (b)      What is AIDS?

   AIDS [Acquired Immuno deficiency Syndrome] is the diseased state of HIV. At this point, the personís immune system is so weak that she/he becomes prune to any disease.

   (c)      What is the difference between the the two?

      HIV is the virus where as AIDS is the disease.

   (d) How long can someone have HIV  before developing AIDS?

     Through immunological test,it may be detedted by 2 weeks after infection and may last for 6 months to 5years before developing Aids depending on several factors; diet, lifestyle, oneís immune system etc.

   (e) How long do most people have AIDS before they die?

       Usually, between 6 months to 2 years.

 

2.          (a) How is HIV transmitted?

-HIV is transmitted through sexual intercourse with partners infected with HIV.

-It is also transmitted through blood transfusion where the donor has HIV in his blood and body fluid.

- By injection with infested needle.

-Through the use of razor blade in a barbing saloon

- through mother to unborn child.

b)               How is it not transmitted?

-HIV is not transmitted through sexual intercourse with an uninfected

-It is also not transmitted by just  blood transfusion but transfusing infected blood.

-       it is not infected through handshake

-       It is not infected by eating with the AIDS patient

- It is not infected by using the same bath house/toilet.

c) What are some myths about how it is spread?

  That Aids is spread through witchcraft, handshakes, using the same eating bowls or bathing with the same bucket

 -   that Aids come as a result ofthe godís wrath on man when one offends them.

3.How can the transmittion of HIV be prevented?

      -Sexual abstainance

       - proper and careful use of condom

       -Staying with a faithful uninfected partner?

 What is Safe sex?  It is the proper use of condoms during sexual intercourse.

4. What are the HIV/AIDS statistics in your country?

   The Aids statistics in my country is as follows

ADULT(Ľ 350,000)

CHILDREN £ 15

MEN

WOMEN

(ABOUT 72,000)

140,000

210,000

 

TOTAL = 442,000

 

b) How does your state or province compare to the rest of the country?

It is not that serious in my district but my region may be the 3rd or 4th out of 10 regions in Ghana.

c) How does your country compare to the rest of the world?

      It may rank within the first 30.

 

d) Can you find the following information for your country?

      i) Number of people living with HIV/AIDS

            About 41,229people.

      ii) HIV prevalence rate of adults with HIV

  The rate has increased from 2.6% in 1994 to about 4.6% in year 2000.

iii) HIV prevalence rate in young people age between 15-24

      It is between 0.8 to2.0% for males and 2.4 to4.5 5 for females

iv)  Number of AIDS orphans

      About 120,000 people

v)  AIDS deaths

      About 157,100 have died since 1986.

5) Is any of this information new to you? if so elaborate

  Yes, the questions under item 4.   We had to do a lot of research to get some figures.

6) Where did you get the information

      From some news item in one of the dailyís

i) Do you have access to the following sources of information

  a)UNAIDS websites?

  b)World Health Organisations

  c)your country's government

  d)non-governmental organisations

websites and others ?

      Well, the information is there. If one search for them, they would be found. But , here in aburi because technical; problems with telephone lines in this area, we donít have access to the net, unless we get to Accra to browse.

 

ii) What misinformation did you have that was cleared up

      The staticstis, we did not know that HIV/AIDS is becoming a pandemic.




            KISSING AND HIV
I and my students share the opinion that if there are sores, cuts in the mouth or lips from which one could come into contact with blood, through kissing then, kissing can spread HIV.
Also, where a partner has gum bleeding or a dental problem there is a high probability of HIV infection.

Saliva is alkaline without dissolved food substances and others. But the pH of blood is about neutral (7.2 -7.4), blood also consist of blood cells and dissolved food substances, gases, hormones etc which probably make it a good medium for the virus.

We think that kissing does not spread HIV as easily as sexual intercourse, probably semen and vaginal fluids  contain hundred folds of the virus as compared to  that through the mouth. 

      2nd Goal Activity
This Goal is THE IMPORTANCE OF HIV/AIDS:
Why do we care about HIV/AIDS anyway?  Why is it an  important issue for our communities and countries? 

AIDS is a disease that puts everybody at risk .Its effect on a relative, may directly or indirectly affect you. The person becomes a social liability. The orphans that are left become a burden to the family. It reduces the work force the country, hence decreasing productivity. It retards development and
become a drain on the economy of the country as the country spends money on drugs and training of health personnel for the country.

1. Does HIV or AIDS affect women differently than men?
Are men or women more at risk for catching HIV?  If so, how?  and why? 

Yes it does, women are more at risk for catching HIV/AIDS more than men. Statistics show that there are more women who are  infected than men due to the reproductive system of women and the fact that women are the weaker sex,. Some could not resist sex with their husbands or any other person with a condom on.

2.  Who is most vulnerable to acquiring HIV in your country?  Men, women, children, youth, what age? Why
are they most at risk?

The youth. Between fifteen to forty-nine with higher percentage being women. This is so because the youth are curious, have the desire to have wealth. Also the youth are within the sexually active age.

3.  What effect has HIV/AIDS had on your community's culture?

It is gradually changing the spirit of weism, where people share common things together like eating , sharing toilet and bath together, drinking from a cup and shaking hands during gatherings, because of the misconception that these activities can spread AIDS.  Certain communities where the culture encourages polygamy, the HIV/AIDS is putting fear in people.

4. What effect has HIV/AIDS had on life expectancy in your country?  Yes HIV/AIDS has reduced the life expectancy in our country.

5. What are the economic impacts of HIV/AIDS? Since it affects most of the youth, the labour force is reduced and results in decreasing productivity, foreign exchange of import of drugs, money spent on HIV/AIDS education, in conferences become a drain to the economy.


6. Can you be tested for HIV/AIDS? Why should someone be tested for HIV?  How easy is it to get tested where you live?  If someone is worried that they might have been exposed to HIV, when should they get tested?  How long does it take to get HIV test results where you live?   At most a day.

7. What should someone with HIV do to prolong their life? .Need to take good diet, medication and do not do strenuous activities  Should not smoke nor drink.

8. Are injecting drugs an issue where you live?  What about sharing needles? tattooing? piercing? razor blades? No,  people do not share needles, razors etc. It is not common here.


We are sorry for the late submission. Can someone help us with a Radio Link facility? We would be very  grateful.

Students and Teacher from Aburi Girls,



         3rd Goal activity

1. Talking about HIV
a. Is it easy to talk about HIV/AIDS with friends?

Not quite, it depends on the circumstances and the  kind of  the person one talks to. As a science graduate, when I visit my village and talk about AIDS, most people listen to me. But, in the cities everybody thinks he/she knows about it. My students find it easier talking to their peers/colleagues about HIV

How many of us talk about HIV with our friends?  What do we talk about?   We do not see many people doing it, but the few talk about the alarming rate of the infection. Here in Ghana, they say 200people are infected everyday, and 1  out of 10 people has the virus. This creates argument
among the students. Some think it is not true. Because  the school population of 1521, with about 150 teaching and non-teaching staff would then have many AIDS patients in the next 2 -5 years.

b. Is it easy to talk about HIV with parents?  How many of us have talked with our parents about HIV/AIDS? Many do, depending on ones relationship with parents. The parents have realized that keeping quiet is not in any way helpful since most of us are sexually active   If we do, what do we say?  What do they say?  We share the basic facts about AIDS, and caution  us (children) to behave carefully. We all agree that we are all at risk.
If we don't, why not? Parents who don't talk about it  do not know much about the it themselves.

c. Is it easy to talk with health workers about HIV/AIDS? We have never talked to the local health workers but those from the district hospital and it's quiet easy

Are youth and their questions and opinions welcome in our local clinics? Yes, very much, the youth organize seminars, talk shows, drama shows aimed at exchanging views.

2. The influence of CULTURE
 a. Does your community have any traditional   practices that have helped to prevent the spread of  HIV?  If so,  what are they? In the past, a girl marries still a virgin. The two families inspect the couple's bed the morning after marriage for traces of blood suspected to come from the broken hymen, but this practice is seen as old fashion due to influence of western culture by the present  generation..

b. Does your community have any traditional practices that have helped SPREAD HIV?  Yes If so, what are they? The traditional healers as one
of their methods cut and put some medicine into people. They use unsterilised knives, this may lead to spread of HIV. Certain traditions promote inheritance of wives from brothers when they pass away. This encourages polygamy which can spread AIDS in case the deceased had it.

 c. How do you know whether a tradition prevents or encourages HIV transmission?.  If the tradition exposes people to contact with
infected fluids, or to unsafe sex, then it encourages HIV transmission but it can be seen to be preventive if it discourages contact with infected fluids, or to unsafe sex
Do people in your community talk about these practices, whether they are good or bad for the people? Yes, now most traditional rulers (chiefs) are
well educated, hence , they are deleting outmoded customs from the system. 


3.      The Influence of the Economy
-- Does the economic situation in your country play a role in HIV transmission?  If Yes How? Yes, very much. Some people have become sex workers, for economic reasons. Even some workers who could not make ends meet from our HIPC salaries practice prostitution after work. Some students in our secondary and tertiary institutions, hairdressing and sewing apprentices practice prostitution in disguised by hoping from men to men, those who do not use condoms risk being infected. What evidence can you give to support your answer? It has been reported that some ladies killed in Ghana's serial murder cases were sex workers who people know to be hairdressers. Also, Aids is prevalent mostly in commercial centres,
mining towns and where there is some sort of construction works in the area.

4. The influence of GOVERNMENT
 a. Does your country have a policy towards HIV/AIDS?   Yes, the Government has pronounced the infection as a National disaster, hence all ministries have AIDS desks .in order to tackle it in an inter-sectoral  manner.  Can you tell us a little about it? the government supports women organizations, NGO, the Ministry of Health and Planned Parenthood Association of Ghana keeps playing adverts of warning about HIV and
advocating for abstention or safer sex using Condoms. There is a National AIDS commission that oversees all efforts to tackle the issue in a multi-sectoral approach to prevent AIDS spread. The Government has recently contracted Loan from the World Bank to fight the disease

 b. Does your government do anything to affect the prevention or treatment of HIV/AIDS?  If so, can you give us an example of what it does?
Sponsorship of adverts on TV stations, tax concession to big companies eg Coca-cola to help it fight the disease, sponsoring seminars, talks in schools, training of AIDS volunteers, openness, adverts and campaigns for behavioral change., collaborative AIDS research with other countries.


5. The influence of RELIGION
 a. How do your local churches, mosques, synagogues,  etc. feel about HIV/AIDS? they talk about it as a disaster, preaching on many radio stations to keep urging people to abstain from sex, extramarital and premarital sex, etc. How do you know what they think about HIV/AIDS?
From their preaching and seminars organise for the youth, donation towards to combat of the disease

 b. Are HIV and AIDS discussed at your local church etc.? YES What is said about HIV/AIDS?  That people should show love towards them. That the family should be more united. Also, people planning to get married in the church must first go for AIDS test
ō  Do these words affect the prevention of HIV or the  treatment of AIDS sufferers? Yes, they boost their morale
ō If so, how? they get hope and live longer, because they are not rejected by their own people. Some people decide to infect others because of how society treat them.

c. Is your local congregation doing anything to  prevent HIV or diminish the effects of AIDS?  If so,  what? Yes, but not as radical as some of us expect. Those who do, do it through Bible teachings on righteous living, abstention or about safer sex. d. Do you feel that your local religious leaders
should be doing more about HIV/AIDS?  If so, what ideas do you have for them? Yes, they should redirect their plans towards human resource development, job creation to enable people to get jobs . This might stop people who give in to casual sex due to economic hardship. They should stop development activities. What use is to build big churches, when the people are dying?. Also the catholic church needs to preach about use of condoms as effective in AIDS prevention since it is not enough to tell the youth to abstain.

 6. Could someone acquire HIV from a blood transfusion in your country? It is a possibility since not all the health centres are well equipped with
personnel and machines for blood

Thank you.

From students and Teacher,
Aburi Girls' Sec. School
Aburi, Ghana

Top