AIDS Walk for Life in the Bulkley Valley
The AIDS Walk for Life started its first of three days of walks in Moricetown this afternoon.
A handful of people participated for today's AIDS and HIV awareness walk... Many wanting to get the message out that AIDS awareness and education is needed in the north. Marilyn Morrison says, “The awareness walk is to let people know that even if you are infected doesn’t mean that you're not a part of our community, because the people affected with HIV and AIDS there are people sisters brothers cousins and moms dads...”
There is thought that there is some hesitation for people to join in on the walk due how people contract the illness. Morrison explains, “There's a lot of support for cancer and stuff people with HIV and AIDS there are discriminating upon and stigmatized because of the roots that HIV comes into our body.”
Participants want the public to get educated and know about the illness and how people can protect themselves. Ron Mitchell has been awarded this year’s HIV/AIDS Champion for all of the awareness he has spread over the last 6 years.. “Education will embrace them like anybody else they do in the community their own relatives.”
Morrison says it’s important to start talking about the problem and teaching kids early on, “It's important thing to do to bring your kids out and talk about it... it's always a good thing.”
Dze L K' ant Friendship Centre HIV AIDS Awareness Worker Genevive Poirier says that many people affected with the virus don’t know. “25% of the people who are living with who have HIV don't know and are responsible for more infections.”
Positive Living North Onsite Manager Melanie Mods stresses the importance of being aware., “Make sure you get the test... Request the test there has been the campaign through Northern Health the HIV101.ca it's a fantastic website... it's a fantastic campaign.”
Bringing all awareness to all types of people in the Bulkely Valley the AIDS walk will be in Smithers on Saturday and in Hazelton on Sunday.