HIV/AIDS Awareness Day at HFCC

With help of sponsors from the Student Activities Office, Diversity Club, and the African American Association, Henry Ford Community College hosted an HIV/AIDS awareness Day in the Rosenau Conference Rooms of the ASCC Building this past Monday, December 2. A presentation was given as well as confidential counseling and testing facilitated by the Wayne County Health Department. The presentation and testing was available not only to staff and students, but to the public as well. The presentation began at noon and testing was available from noon until 3 p.m. The meeting was not mandatory and anyone concerned or curious could find their way in just to ask questions.

The speaker for the event, Alfredo, gave an eye-opening presentation on the disease and educated the public about its effects, short term and long term. He was not so concerned with convincing both teens and adults about abstinence, but offered a way to prevent them from catching this life-long battle, and any other sexually transmitted disease or infection. He explained that once infected with the disease, all hope is not lost and there are ways to live with it. Tips he gave for someone with HIV or AIDS is to quit smoking, consume less alcohol, exercise daily and take daily vitamins.

Most people who do not know much about the subject of HIV/AIDS believe that the disease is only contracted through sexual intercourse or oral sex. However, that is false; Alfredo explained all of the possible ways to contract the disease, such as passing it down to a child through breast milk, or any open blood, maybe even reusing a dirty needle.

While abstinence is encouraged, the Wayne County Health Department also pushes for people to practice safe sex. Alfredo tells men and women that “there are other ways of bonding other than penetration, one being massages.” He then explained the anatomy of both male and female organs and explained how the risk is lowered once a man urinates after sex. For women, the risk is higher because semen is absorbed in their vaginal and anal areas.

Free testing was also done during the event, anonymously, and can still be done through medical centers for cheap! Any further information about the spread of HIV/AIDS can be reached at aids.gov. Most people choose not to be tested for fear that they have contracted the disease and that is an extremely wrong way to go. Every 9 and a half minutes someone is tested positive for HIV/AIDS. Know your status and get tested!

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