K4A - About HIV/Aids

Key facts

Since 1981, nearly 25 million people have died from AIDS.

HIV/AIDS causes debilitating illness and premature death in people during their prime years of life and has devastated families and communities. Further, HIV/AIDS has complicated efforts to fight poverty, improve health, and promote development by:

Diminishing a person’s ability to support, work and provide for his or her family. At the same time, treatment and health-care costs related to HIV/AIDS consume household incomes. The combined effect of reduced income and increased costs impoverishes individuals and households.

Deepening socio-economic and gender disparities. Women are at high risk of infection and have few options for providing for their families. Children affected by HIV/AIDS, due to their own infection or parental illness or death, are less likely to receive an education, as they leave school to care for ailing parents and younger siblings.

Straining the resources of communities – hospitals, social services, schools and businesses. Health care workers, teachers, and business and government leaders have been lost to HIV/AIDS. The impact of diminished productivity is felt on a national scale.

Through unprecedented global attention and intervention efforts, the rate of new HIV infections has slowed and prevalence rates have leveled off globally and in many regions. Despite the progress seen in some countries and regions, the total number of people living with HIV continues to rise.
In 2008, globally, about 2 million people died of AIDS, 33.4 million were living with HIV and 2.7 million people were newly infected with the virus.

HIV infections and AIDS deaths are unevenly distributed geographically and the nature of the epidemics vary by region. Epidemics are abating in some countries and burgeoning in others. More than 90 percent of people with HIV are living in the developing world.

There is growing recognition that the virus does not discriminate by age, race, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or socio-economic status – everyone is susceptible. However, certain groups are at particular risk of HIV, including men who have sex with men (MSM), injecting drug users (IDUs), and commercial sex workers (CSWs).

The impact of HIV/AIDS on women and girls has been particularly devastating. Women and girls now comprise 50 percent of those aged 15 and older living with HIV.

The impact of HIV/AIDS on children and young people is a severe and growing problem. In 2008, 430,000 children under age 15 were infected with HIV and 280,000 died of AIDS.1, 4 In addition, about 15 million children have lost one or both parents due to the disease.4 ..These figures have continued increasing and diseases like malaria have increased the rate at which HIV/AIDs infected people are dying

There are effective prevention and treatment interventions, as well as research efforts to develop new approaches, medications and vaccines but we as Kenya for Africa have realised the need for people on the ground to be involved in the fight. If everybody did something the world be be a much better place by year 2015.

The sixth Millennium Development Goal (MDG) focuses on stopping and reversing the spread of HIV/AIDS by 2015 and we at Kenya For Africa are in full support of this initiative.

  Contact Rosemary Kahiga for more details.