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4/12/2012 - Argentina

A national celebration

AMMAR organized different activities in its various subsidiaries, as part of the World Day to Combat AIDS, whose motto is "Getting to Zero": Zero new infections, Zero deaths, Zero discrimination.

Activities started the day before, when A.M.M.A.R. La Plata —together with the provincial Ministry of Health and NGOs Otrarse La Plata— held a day of voluntary testing for HIV, Hepatitis and V.D.R.L., which took place from 9 a.m. to 3 in the afternoon, and was free and open to the entire community.

About 120 people had the test voluntarily, as part of the reopening of the Health Center "Sandra Cabrera". Soledad Diaz, general secretary of A.M.M.A.R. Province of Buenos Aires and responsible of the Health Center said: "Everyone should take the test to prevent any STD. Our life depends on it".

On the other hand, fellows from A.M.M.A.R. Santiago del Estero were present at the festival "Santiago without AIDS" along with fellows from A.T.T.T.A. (Association of Transvestites, Transsexuals and Transgender Argentina) and Divas. The Festival took place on Saturday 1st. of December at the waterfront of the new beach area, where tasks of prevention were carried out, along with distribution of pamphlets and condoms and voluntary testing.

There were also local rock bands like Memoria de Atari, Caleidoscopio, Pirámide de Paranoia, Secuaz, Elver y Caterva. This activity was declared of legislative interest by the Chamber of Deputies of the Province and of municipal interest by the Honorable Council of the Capital City.

Furthermore, A.M.M.A.R. Entre Rios, together with the Provincial Programs of Prevention of HIV/AIDS, Sexual and Reproductive Health, Comprehensive Health of Adolescents, Cuidate Más, the Laboratory of Epidemiology of the Health Portfolio, INADI, Paraná Departmental Direction of Schools, STI-AIDS Program of the National University of Entre Rios and organizations such as Convivir and Gay Community of Entre Rios (CHER) conducted awareness-raising activities in the health tent that was mounted on the Plaza 1º de Mayo of Paraná. Under the slogan: "INFORM OURSELVES TO FORM OURSELVES" different videos were projected, brochures and condoms were distributed, and the community was informed about the disease through an open radio where people could ask and give their opinion on the matter.

At night, the 34 million victims of HIV AIDS worldwide were remembered through a symbolic act, where a red bow was placed on the floor and candles were lit to remember the victims.

A.M.M.A.R. Salta performed the activity in the Hemotherapy Center (Blood Bank) of the city the 30th of November. Invited by the HIV/AIDS Program of the province, our fellows explained the proper use of condoms and performed a short play where they interpreted the strategies given to female sex workers to negotiate condom use with their clients. They also distributed brochures of the organization and brochures on prevention of HIV and other STIs.

A.M.M.A.R. Ushuaia participated of the journey organized by Rock & Vida last 1st of December. Tests were performed voluntary, free and confidential. Bands such as Los Nietos de Lorenzo, Cintia Galeano and la Hormiga played at the event.

A.M.M.A.R. Mendoza was on Saturday morning at the Plaza Independencia of Mendoza City doing prevention work. In this regard, the fellow Lara said: "The work we did was successful. We raise awareness in people who approached to be informed and we gave them a brochure with a condom".

Finally, on Monday 3, fellows from National A.M.M.A.R. and A.M.M.A.R. Capital moved to the obelisk, where they handed out condoms and brochures "Ponelo Vos" (Put it yourself) where the fellows taught how to put the condom on with their mouth. Lucia Valiente —referent of A.M.M.A.R. Capital— said: "We are very pleased with the activity, because it was well received by the community. And there were few people who did not accept the condom, to whom we tried to raise awareness about the importance of condom use. I also told them that «loving is caring»".