May 18, 2013
Each year on May 18, the global HIV/AIDS community commemorates HIV Vaccine Awareness Day (HVAD). This year, AVAC worked with civil society and research partners from across the globe on a number of community events to mark the date.
From Beijing to Bangkok, through 12 cities in Africa1 around to New York, Oakland and Los Angeles in the United States, HIV prevention advocates organized a range of events to highlight pressing issues facing the vaccine field today. They also took time to recognize the contribution of trial volunteers, advocates, researchers, funders and policy makers working towards a safe and effective HIV vaccine.
Advocates marched. They wrote editorials in newspapers. They spoke on radio and television. They blogged, tweeted and Skyped. Each of the HVAD events included community voices. “One of the highlights from our event in Harare was the conversation on community engagement in research processes. It’s important for us as community advocates to be meaningfully engaged in research at all levels,” said Tendayi Westerhof, organizer of a May 21 event in Zimbabwe, Sensitizing Community on the Value of HIV Vaccine Research.
For a full list of events, visit our HIV Vaccine Awareness Day page, which includes an Advocacy Toolkit with a range of materials breaking down complex AIDS vaccine science.
1 Nairobi, Kisumu and Thika in Kenya; Kampala and Luwero in Uganda; Jos and Lagos in Nigeria; Lusaka in Zambia; Harare in Zimbabwe; and Durban, Cape Town and Johannesburg in South Africa.