The University of Cincinnati Student Wellness Center partnered with GlobeMed, a nonprofit global health organization, to increase student awareness about HIV and AIDS in recognition of World AIDS Day.
World AIDS Day, which was established by the U.N. General Assembly in 1988, is an international day dedicated to raising awareness about AIDS. It is recognized annually Dec. 1.
According UNAIDS, a combined 36.9 million people in the world are currently living with HIV and AIDS. Of those, approximately 1.3 million are children, many of whom contracted the disease in the womb.
To commemorate World AIDS Day, UC hosted an event on its uptown campus Nov. 30 on MainStreet across from Tangeman University Center. The event was designed to spread awareness about the AIDS pandemic and teach students about preventing sexually transmitted infections.
“It’s so cool that our campus is able to do things like this to try to give a little extra education outside the classroom,” said Elizabeth Hill, a third-year nursing student. “There is so much that we don’t know outside of what we’re majoring in, so it’s nice to see so many different kinds of students participating as well.”
The event featured several games for students to participate in, including “pin the condom on the Bearcat” and AIDS trivia. Students also had the opportunity to inflate condoms and inscribe them with a short phrase to promote safe sex.
“We’re just out here promoting safe sexual behavior and safe sexual habits,” said Sera Dindia, a peer educator at the Student Wellness Center. “We have condoms, lube [and] condom wallets.”
The games addressed prevention methods, HIV and AIDS statistics and ways to help and support those inflicted with HIV and AIDS. Representatives of GlobeMed and the Student Wellness Center lightened the atmosphere by playing music and offering candy and brownies to students who participated in the activities.
“We’re here just promoting safe sex and wellness, which is why we partnered with the wellness center to make this an on-campus event and to really get students involved with their health,” said Maria Bobrowski-Artola, a member of GlobeMed.