Media Contact: Nora Weber
National Aboriginal AIDS Awareness Week 2014: Leaders gather in Regina to announce Indigenous HIV and AIDS Strategy Regina, SK (November 4, 2014) –
The Canadian Aboriginal AIDS Network (CAAN) and All Nations Hope Network (ANHN) will co-host the Aboriginal AIDS Awareness Week Launch Event on December 1, 2014 in Regina, SK. National Aboriginal leadership will be present to support the launch and the release of the Saskatchewan Indigenous Strategy on HIV and AIDS. In the following days, there will be workshops across the country (Montreal, Ottawa, New Credit First Nations, Toronto, Winnipeg, and Vancouver) to continue discussions on Aboriginal HIV and AIDS issues in Canada Dec 2 – 6, 2014.
Aboriginal AIDS Awareness Week 2014 reaches out to include Aboriginal People Living HIV and AIDS (APHAs), national Aboriginal organizations, government partners, health care providers, and community leaders to focus on how Aboriginal people can continue to work together to reach the UNAIDS 2011-2015 goal of: Getting to Zero. Zero new HIV infections. Zero discrimination. Zero AIDS related deaths. While Worlds AIDS Day reminds us that progress has been made in finding solutions and moving towards zero, the improvements amongst Aboriginal communities lag far behind the rest of the population. First Nations, Métis, and Inuit people continue to respond to HIV and AIDS with community-based initiatives, but are still experiencing epidemic proportions 3.5 times higher than other Canadians.
The HIV and AIDS rates among Saskatchewan Aboriginal people is among the highest in the world and, until this year, there has been no Indigenous strategy to address it. “Aboriginal AIDS Awareness Week will celebrate our successes so far and explore how we can get to zero by introducing culturally specific approaches that will address the legacy of residential schools, poverty and racism,” stated CEO of CAAN, Ken Clement. “It is critical that Aboriginal people feel comfortable discussing the risks and Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal communities take a non-judgmental approach to testing and cultural care, treatment and support.”
The collaboration created between cultural, social, health, and political organizations during Aboriginal AIDS Awareness Week reaches across all barriers to create a unified approach to solutions for Aboriginal HIV and AIDS in Canada.
We invite you to join us: Where: Launch Event Ramada Plaza Hotel, 1818 Victoria Street, Regina SK When: December 1, 2014, 10:00 am CST RSVP: By November 21, 2014 at http://aboriginalaidsawareness.com/aaaw-rsvp
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About CAAN. www.caan.ca The Canadian Aboriginal AIDS Network (CAAN) is a not-for-profit coalition of individuals and organizations which provides leadership, support and advocacy for Aboriginal individuals living with and affected by HIV and AIDS, regardless of where they reside. Their philosophy is that all Aboriginal Peoples deserve the right to protect themselves against infectious disease and thrives on providing the Aboriginal community with accurate and current information about HIV including risks of contracting the virus, issues of care and treatment, and support for families and those living with the disease. SCHEDULE OF EVENTS:
Dec 1 – Regina, SK: Ramada Plaza Hotel Aboriginal AIDS Awareness Week 2014 Launch Event
Dec 2 – New Credit, ON Mississaugas of the New Credit First Nations – Youth Event
Dec 3 – Ottawa, ON: Parliament Hill – Parliamentary Breakfast
Dec 3 – Winnipeg, MB Nine Circles – Two Spirits – Honouring our Caregivers
Dec 4 – Montreal, QC – Women’s Event
Dec 5 – Vancouver, BC – Vancouver Native Health – Men’s Health and Wellness
Dec 6 – Toronto, ON Toronto Birth Centre Think Global – Act Local: Indigenous people and HIV/AIDS
For more information on these events visit: www.aboriginalaidsawareness.com