International HIV and AIDS advocates gather ahead of World AIDS Day 2019

In its seventh year, the World AIDS Day 2019 lecture pays tribute to the work of Professor Father Michael Kelly, the renowned Zambia-based activist for HIV and AIDS.


International HIV and AIDS advocates are to gather on November 28 ahead of World AIDS Day 2019 to examine policy, practices and advances in HIV and AIDS worldwide. This annual lecture, which is an Irish Aid event facilitated by the Irish Global Health Network, follows a historic move by the Irish Government in November to launch Ireland’s first HIV PrEP programme—a large-scale intervention of antiretroviral medication to prevent HIV infection.

Global HIV infection rates are declining, yet Ireland had an 8% increase in infections last year. There is a continuing need for awareness of the disease and the annual Father Michael Kelly Lecture will this year remind us all of the need to be safe.

Minister of State for Diaspora and International Development, Ciarán Cannon TD said:

“Great progress has been made in the fight against HIV and AIDS, preventing new infections and in ensuring that those living with the disease can now live long and productive lives. However, as the rise in infections at home shows, we cannot be complacent. Fr. Michael Kelly led the fight against HIV and AIDS in Zambia. Each year a lecture is held in his honour marking World Aids Day. The lecture allows us to reflect on what we are doing well and what we need to improve on.”

The Father Michael Kelly Lecture brings together international and domestically recognised HIV & AIDS experts and advocates, to examine and debate policy, practices and advances in HIV & AIDS worldwide. The annual event is a tribute to Father Michael Kelly SJ who has spent 64 years working in the education sector in Zambia. He remains an advocate for those affected by HIV and AIDS both within Zambia, regionally and on the global stage.

This year’s speakers include; Dr. Joannie Marlene Bewa, Physician, Researcher and Advocate; Georgina Caswell, Head of Programmes, Global Network of People Living with HIV; Ailbhe Smyth, Academic, Feminist and Activist and Ellie Marley, HIV Stigma and Shame Researcher.

This event will act as a platform for debate on how best to ensure that those individuals and groups who are discriminated against, who are marginalised by virtue of their social and economic status, their sexuality or their gender, are not left behind in the fight against HIV and AIDS, both domestically and internationally.

This is a free event for World AIDS Day 2019 but booking is essential. Book now.

© 2019 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.

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