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:: PRELIMINARIES

International Youth Leader Conference at Marangu, Kilimanjaro Area, 2006 - "Highway to HIV / AIDS Awareness"




Our goal:

STOP AIDS & SAVE LIVES


There is still limited access to knowledge and information throughout many countries.
Give Youth the tools to learn and teach their peers about the different contexts of HIV/AIDS and its deep roots in inner and outer realities (from biological to socio-cultural to psychological to political to spiritual) by highlighting and teaching the importance of multidimensional approaches – both in terms of empirical data, but also intersubjective strategies such as inter - active play methods, dialogue and networking, both on the ground and in the internet, in order to more effectively confront this deadly disease with its fatal consequences for individuals, local and global communities and thus to complement and multiply the ongoing efforts to


STOP AIDS & SAVE LIVES !


Content
Conference location and duration, office, organizers and contact
Introduction to the conference - The pandemic and its larger context
Invited participants
Objectives
Conference approaches
Themes
Conference activities
Lecturers and Guest Speakers
Admission and submission details
Accommodation
Travel and transport details
Estimated costs
About maaa and WATU WA WATU
Activities after the conference



Office:MAAA East Africa,
 Kinukamori Waterfalls,
 Conservation Area at Marangu,
 P.O. Box 864, Marangu, Eastern Kilimanjaro, Tanzania
Organizers:   Watu Wa Watu Team ("People Serve People"),
 Mankind Aids Arts Awareness (maaa East Africa),
 Executive Wilderness Programme (EWP)
Contact:maaa Mankind Aids Arts Awareness
 Lindauer Str. 7
 10781 Berlin, Germany
 phone: 49- (0)30- 36751797 email:
  
Location:Teachers´ College Hall, Marangu
Duration:8th -12th February 2006

Introduction to the conference - The pandemic and its larger context
After more than two decades of research efforts, HIV/AIDS remains an incurable and fatal disease with a minority of people in the developing countries with access to life-prolonging antiretroviral treatment.

Generally, current HIV-prevention coverage still is extremely low. Only a fraction of people at risk of HIV-exposure, fewer than one in five, have meaningful access to basic prevention services in low- and middle-income countries according to the UNAIDS Global Report 2004.

The situation in Tanzania is no exception. Here, the prevalence of HIV-infection has reached 11% in 2002, which means 1.8 million people being infected with the virus (NACP 2002) . Especially youth and woman are the most vulnerable groups due to biological, socio-economic and socio-cultural factors.

In Tanzania, like in other Sub-Saharan African countries, poor health care facilities and services, iIliteracy and lack of education limit the accessibility to information on HIV, especially among youth.

Levels of understanding and knowledge on HIV/AIDS, experience and skills to teach prevention methods differ widely among educators.

Like in many cultures, sexuality and reproduction are still taboo topics.

Embedded in a complex pattern of culture, religion and society - to start to talk openly about private and sensitive issues like sexuality - poses a great challenge for many individuals, even for counselors and educators, and often a confrontation with outer (public institutions, churches) and inner (shame, fear) barriers.

Moreover, in many parts of Africa, reality suggests a gap between sexual norms and religious values with one-sided emphasis or often inappropriate and incomplete information on ABC interventions.

Thus, with the words of UNAIDS , "full-scale and comprehensive prevention efforts to close the gaps..." [between the present fragmented reality of governmental institutions and programms, CBOs, NGOs, other groups, communities and individuals],"...will need to be more sensitve to the different contexts of the epidemic adressing vulnerability, both on an individual and structural level." (UNAIDS 2004)

Invited participants:
Youth leaders, teachers, peer educators, artists and youth who want to become counsellors, youth leaders or trainers in the future from all over East Africa, especially rural areas, and the international communities.

Objectives:
The overall objective is to raise HIV/AIDS awareness and to fight the spread of the HI- virus by improving our tools of information and communication used to convey the message of prevention and the promotion of sexual behaviour change to individuals and communities, especially youth.

Our immediate goal is to bring key persons from the informal and formal educational sector together. We want the participants to get to know each other, to build relationships, to explore and deepen their level of knowledge and understanding of the different dimensions of the disease (biological, medical, socio-cultural, psychological and spiritual).
By sharing ideas and experiences and through inter-active practices (discussion, role-play, dance, theatre, etc.) mutual understanding will be enhanced and creativity stimulated.

The participants are invited to reflect and discuss the gaps between different groups of society, the degrees of their vulnerability, and gaps between messages of prevention and the actual sexual behaviour of individuals, sexual norms and religious values, reason (science) and belief - and explore possible solutions.

Different learning and teaching methods and models for community education, involvement, work and empowerment will be presented.

The conference is meant to be the basis for the development of regular work-shops, seminars and sensitisation activities spread across the country and for the establishment of both information centres in some communities and common local, national and international networks (on the ground and in the internet) and thereby enable effective and meaningful future communication, collaboration and coordination among youth, other peer groups and active organizations.

Conference Approaches:
Active participation and personal contribution of costs like transport and accommodation, knowledge and skills - all according to the participant´s facilities; inter-active learning and teaching; sharing of experience, ideas and problems; analytical-methodological (i.e. brainstorming, SWOT ), artistic and self-explorative approaches.

Themes (planned):
  • Status quo of the epidemic
  • H/A and vulnerability
  • H/A, culture, environment and education
  • H/A, adolescent sexuality and reproductive health
  • H/A and psychology
  • H/A, sexuality and spirituality
  • The role of traditional and modern medicine for affected communities
  • Introduction of `Creative Arts Communication´ - how to improve our artistic tools and general means of information and communication
  • Income generating activities for communities
  • Future activities and vision
Conference Activities:
  • Teaching sessions (oral, video, demonstration, i.e. condom use)
  • Speeches
  • Discussion and study groups
  • Arts Communication Workshops (music, drama, performance, painting and others)
  • Common Arts Works ( "Seeds Carpet" in public, "Forest of Hope and Awareness" as part of the Conference Gallery, presentation of the "HIV/AIDS World Memorial" for the internet, production of a "Global Counselling Video" and others)
  • Reforestation Programme (half a day) of Kinukamori Waterfall Conservation Area with Ficus-seedlings and other trees
  • Sensitization festival in the centre of Marangu (half a day) as a `community link´ to the conference
  • Documentation of the activities, partly to be used as learning and teaching materials in the future
  • Short visits of historical, cultural and natural sites in and around Marangu (caves, waterfalls, lakes, Chagga huts and others)
  • Other activities
Lecturers/ Guest Speakers
Dr. Moses Mwemi, AMO, DTMPH, President of Watu wa Watu, Malinyi
Grace D. Shayo, General Secretary of Watu Wa Watu, Dodoma
Alpha P. Moshi, Chief Coordinator of Watu Wa Watu in Tanzania
Leonard Boniface, Oxfam Youth Parliamentarian, Journalist, Artist, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
Br. Samuel Mparange, Itete, Ulanga District
Wilbert Makisha, Leader of Vocational Centre, Himo
Dr. Ian Mamuya, Marangu Community Development, Marangu
R.E. Futterer, General Practitioner, DTMPH and Advisor of Watu Wa Watu, MAAA NGO, Germany
- others still to be invited.


Admission:
free

Accommodation:
School and college accomodations (low budget) Cottage "Mama Stella" and Kibo Hotel (middle-high budget)
Full Board provided for all sponsored participants, Lunch provided for all others

Travel and transport details:
to be announced before long


About maaa and WATU WA WATU
maaa Mankind Aids Arts Awareness is a non-profit, non-governmental, charitable organization (NGO) with its registered office in Berlin, Germany. (Reg.nr. 24372NZ)
The Society was founded in November 2004 by a group of doctors, artists, psychotherapists, teachers and other activists and is granted the charity status from January 1st 2006.
maaa NGO´s objective is to support community-based, long-term HIV/AIDS prevention and awareness projects in East Africa. In spring 2004 the society started to network and collaborate with active individuals and groups in Kenya and Tanzania, both on the ground and in the internet.
At present, one of maaa´s main activities, in collaboration with partners and friends in Tanzania, is the support of the new and rapidly evolving grassroots movement WATU WA WATU, "People Serve People", which originated in the Southern part of rural Tanzania. Our common goal is to sensitise and mobilize communities with limited or no access to basic prevention services in different parts of the country, to raise HIV/AIDS awareness and mitigate its impact on society.


Activities after the conference support affected communities:


"Save Live Safari" organized by EWP (Executive Wilderness Programme) with Mountain Trekking (Kilimanjaro, Mt. Meru) and safaris to all National Parks of Tanzania with visit of different tribal communities affected by HIV/AIDS and various community projects (an orphanage, WATU WA WATU and its artistic and cultural groups) on a tourism /charity basis.




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