By Elizabeth Nyaguyo
International Network of Religious Leaders living with or affected by HIV and AIDS (INERELA +Zimbabwe) said the media should be responsible when reporting issues to do with HIV and AIDS to avoid discrimination.
In an interview with Sly Media, INERELA + Zimbabwe Programme Officer Venancio Tavarwisa said that the media should always report positively about people living with HIV and AIDS to reduce discrimination.
“The media should write and report positively and in a non-discriminatory manner.
It should continue to engage and re-engage properly living with HIV and also provide non-discriminatory platforms for people living with HIV to interact,” he said.
He went on to urge societies to also respect people living with HIV.
“Our societies must uphold, honor and respect human dignity, women, girls ,and all,” he added.
Tavarwisa said that,as an organisation, there have done so many things to reduce stigma in people living with HIV.
“As INERELA +Zimbabwe, we have coordinated collaboration between the faith sector and key stakeholders in our quest to break the silence against HIV related stigma.
We have done awareness campaigns,trainings,dialogues, and empowerment activities, and we had to meaningfully involve people living with HIV to reduce stigma,” he said.
He went on to say that their efforts in terms of the HIV prevalence rate among sex workers have brought positive impact since their intervention.
“INERELA +Zimbabwe has been on a positive note in terms of HIV prevalence amongst sex workers although analysis of HIV prevalence is constant with high incidence among female sex workers in Zimbabwe.
“Our continued intervention shall surely put positive pressure towards the decline of both incidences and prevalence of HIV among sex workers in Zimbabwe,” he said.
INERELA+ Zimbabwe influences the control and eradication of HIV and AIDS through diverse approaches that ensure and enhance wider reach, and the projects are under the leadership of religious leaders.