Special events are commemorated each year to provide Jamaicans with opportunities to test for HIV at a central, convenient location. These events usually feature HIV/AIDS information, condom demonstrations, risk reduction conversations, empowerment opportunities, entertainment and most importantly, voluntary counselling and testing (VCT). Three major special events are: Safer Sex Week, celebrated during the week of Valentine’s Day, Regional Testing Day which is a collaborative effort with Scotiabank Jamaica on or around June 26 and World AIDS Day on December 1.
Safer Sex Week
Safer Sex Week (SSW) was first observed in 1994 during the week of Valentine’s Day to heighten awareness for safer sexual practices. SSW is observed during this time because of the anticipated increase in sex love and the need to tie safer sexual messages during this time. These messages include a variety of condom use messages as well as sticking to one faithful, uninfected partner.
|2007||Safe Sex/Good Sex = Rubbers & a Test|
|2008||Put It On Before You Get It On|
|2009||Smart Women Always Buy, Carry & Use Condoms|
Regional Testing Day
In June 2008, Scotiabank Jamaica joined its colleagues in the Eastern Caribbean and the CBMP to establish and promote a Regional HIV Testing Day for the first time. The National HIV/STI Programme and Scotiabank collaborated for the second consecutive year in 2009 to organize HIV testing across the island. In 2008, three of Scotiabank’s largest branches, King Street, Montego Bay and Mandeville, were set up as major testing sites while in 2009, this tripled to nine testing sites, with the major locations being Downtown Kingston and Liguanea, Spanish Town, St. Catherine and Sam Sharpe Square in Montego Bay as part of the strategy to reach more persons.
World AIDS Day
World AIDS Day is an international event commemorated on December 1 each year to raise awareness for HIV. Activities range from VCT, information, launches, concerts, candle light vigils, among others. The symbol associated with World AIDS day is the red ribbon and is incorporated in all activities.
|2007||Stop AIDS, Keep the Promise|
|2008||Youth Take the Lead|
|2009||Yes I Can…Support Someone Living With HIV|