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Live Up Heroes road show travels to Saint Lucia

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Contact: Julita Peter

Monday, February 16, 2009 – Executive Director of the Caribbean Broadcast Media Partnership on HIV/AIDS, Dr Allyson Leacock, is currently undertaking a number of visits to media houses in Saint Lucia and the region. The purpose of the visit is to engage the media more fully in the LIVE-UP campaign. LIVE UP: Love, Protect, Respect, the Caribbean’s first media-led campaign on HIV/AIDS, was launched in 2006. It is a coalition of leading television and radio broadcasters representing countries across the region, that seeks to inspire and empower young people in particular, to sensitize the general public on matters pertaining to HIV and AIDS.

During her visit to the Government Information Service on Monday, February 16th, 2009 , Dr. Leacock
said she is looking forward to the media forging partnerships with organizations such as the Aids
Action Foundation. Dr Leacock also wants to see the media stop treating HIV/AIDS related stories as secondary, and start giving these issues greater prominence in their news coverage.

“The media are really an important partner in getting the message across, and we are hoping that as Caribbean people we change the dialogue about HIV, and help to strengthen the response to HIV in the Caribbean,” Dr Leacock said.

Among the several crucial LIVE Up messages, are Human Rights and Treatment. According to Dr. Leacock, “Every human being has the right to universal access to treatment, care and protection; these
are are important.”

A new component of LIVE UP, is the LIVE UP Heroes Campaign, featuring several individuals from across the Caribbean, who are doing their part to stem the spread of HIV. Those individuals all have a personal story about how HIV/AIDS has affected them.

The LIVE UP Heroes include Trinidadian, Wendy FitzWilliam, UNAIDS Goodwill Ambassador, Barbadian, Alison Hinds, Soca Artiste, Bahamian, Keith Kemp, Director General of the Bahamas National Youth Ambassador for Positive Living, Barbadian, Corey Lane, a youth consultant for the Ministry of Education in Barbados, Saint Lucian Shana Marius, a Peer Counsellor for the AIDS Action Foundation of Saint Lucia, Jamaican, Kerrell McKay, a youth intervention coordinator, in the National HIV/AIDS Programme and Trinidadian, Luke Sinnette, Social Displacement Field Officer, in the Ministry of Social Development.

The Caribbean Broadcast Media Partnership on HIV/AIDS, is a part of the global media AIDS initiative, and has eighty-three broadcast members in twenty-five Caribbean countries. June 27th 2009, has been designated: “CBMP Regional HIV Testing Day”.

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