Beneficiaries of a U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)-supported program in Nigeria discuss how the program leads to prevention of HIV, sexually-transmitted infections and unintended pregnancies. HIV is a leading cause of death and a health threat to millions worldwide. As a key implementer of the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), CDC provides technical assistance to country and state-level ministries of health to implement effective, efficient HIV programs. This support helps saves lives of men, women, and especially children through HIV treatment services and a combination of prevention strategies. To achieve maximum health impact, this data-driven approach is tailored to the unique characteristics of the local epidemic.
[Idoroyen] A lot of risk in this community Girls are at risk of being raped, of being molested, and risk of HIV. We are implementing the Orviser Program.
Supported by APIN Public Health Initiatives Citizen Nigeria, and PEPFAR, the US President’s Emergency Fund for AIDS Relief. They discovered that there were girls who were here, they were still using rocks to stem their menstrual period. Who didn’t have an idea about sexual reproductive health. Who didn’t know anything about the existence of HIV infection. So they started an initiative called the Rags to Pad.
They told us many things about how we can keep ourself protected.
[Idoroyen] One of the things that the girls said, “Okay, we would like to learn this skill”. Skills that could generate income for them.
It was then that I went to learn fashion design and I also went to learn mechanic, military mechanic.
If we didn’t have CDC and APIN supporting us, we would have more children who died before their time. So this project, really has something that it’s doing for the children.
I really want to be a mass communicator, because I want to enlighten most girls about how to protect themselves from unwanted pregnancy, pre-marital sex, HIV, gonorrhea, STI, and all of that things that they will be able to say no to what they don’t want and yes to what they want.
[Idoroyen] There is a need to educate them early so they don’t make the wrong decisions and so they can live their full potentials.