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American Public Health Association
133rd Annual Meeting & Exposition
December 10-14, 2005
Philadelphia, PA
APHA 2005
4012.0: Tuesday, December 13, 2005 - 9:00 AM

Abstract #117377

Each church a support center for the community: Church based HIV/AIDS support groups

Oscar A. Giordano, MD, MPH, Sub-Saharan Africa, AAIM, Adventist AIDS International Ministry, Africa Office, 30 Peter Place, Lyme Park, Randburg, South Africa, (+27) 11-463-1501, ogiordano@aidsministry.com and Eugenia Giordano, MD, MPH, Sub-Saharan Africa, AAIM - Adventist AIDS International Ministry, Africa Office, 30 Peter Place, Lyme Park, Randburg, Johannesburg, South Africa.

An innovative faith-based approach to the HIV/AIDS epidemic is being implemented by AAIM (Adventist – AIDS International Ministry) in eight countries of the Sub-Saharan Africa since 2003. The goal of this action plan is to use the churches as “support centers for the communities in the fight against HIV and AIDS”. Love and compassion is one of the main components used in the implementation and approach to the infected and affected by this epidemic. This action plan works through “Church based HIV/AIDS support groups” as the active force within the lay membership, which in turn design and carry on the grassroots initiatives to reach the communities. Since its beginning in 2003, this plan has already shown its efficiency in organizing HIV/AIDS competent churches. One of the advantages of this approach is that the participants work on a volunteer basis, assuring continuity and very low operational costs. It has been found that in most of the churches there are many people willing to participate in the outreach to PLWHA (People living with HIV and AIDS), but the reality is that they do not know how to help. This approach gives the opportunity for them to “know how” and to fulfill their mission.

Learning Objectives:

  • At the conclusion of this session, the participants will be able to

    Keywords: Community Outreach, HIV Interventions

    Related Web page: www.aidsministry.com

    Presenting author's disclosure statement:

    I wish to disclose that I have NO financial interests or other relationship with the manufactures of commercial products, suppliers of commercial services or commercial supporters.

    [ Recorded presentation ] Recorded presentation

    Faith And Health Practices In Institutional Settings: Evaluation And Accountability

    The 133rd Annual Meeting & Exposition (December 10-14, 2005) of APHA