The JCI Puerto Princesa Peacock, Inc. (JCIPPPI) or Peacock Jaycees is stepping up its school-to-school age-appropriate awareness campaign against the spread of the human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS) among the youth in the city.
Peacock Jaycees president Maria Claribelle “Mabelle” Castro said from holding the “Stop the Scare. Be Aware.” HIV/AIDS awareness information drive to Fullbright College in January, they are bringing it on Wednesday to the Palawan National School (PNS) to about 2,000 senior high students (SHS).
She said the activity will be forum type where the senior high students can ask the panelists question after a film showing about HIV/AIDS.
The panelists will be composed of Ivann Polizon, HIV advocate from Roots of Health (also Ugat ng Kalusugan); Romeo Abala Jr., president of Project H4 Palawan, Inc., and Regina Villapa, program coordinator for the Sexually Transmitted Disease (STI)/HIV/AIDS program of the City Health Office (CHO).
“There is an increasing incidence of HIV in Palawan and one of the best ways to help curtail this trend is to educate the people, especially the youth. We are focusing on the youth because they are the ones who are vulnerable to contract HIV because of their lifestyle. By bringing the awareness campaign to different schools, the Peacock Jaycees will be able to contribute to preventing the spread of HIV attacks cells in the immune system causes AIDS,” Castro said.
She said the HIV forum will also provide senior high students with opportunities to learn how they can also help prevent its spread and remove the “stigma” against people living with HIV and AIDS by becoming a part of a caring and compassionate society.
Age-appropriate education on the subject, she said, can help the senior high students understand why they must help in preventing the bullying of people living with HIV and AIDS, as well as their harassment.
“If they know the risks involved and we bust the myths that they know about HIV/AIDS, then we can help,” she pointed out.
Castro encouraged the students who will be attending the activity to ask questions about HIV/AIDS that are confusing them so they will understand what they must do to be aware to stop the scare.
The JCIPPPI or Peacock Jaycees is an all-female young professional organization in Palawan under the JCI Philippines and Junior Chamber International (JCI) engage in community projects as active citizens, fulfilling the goal of providing opportunities that can empower young people to make positive change.