The United State President’s Emergency Plan For Aids Relief (PEPFAR) in conjunction with the African Center for Development Reporting (ACEDEV), have organised a two-day training workshop on HIV and AIDS reporting for Journalists in the Ahafo Region.
Fifteen media practitioners drawn from print, electronic and online, attended the event held here on Wednesday, focused on ending HIV and AIDS epidemic by 2030 through testing and treatment.
Participants were taken through topics as packaging a story, ending stigmatisation and discrimination, electronic advocacy, building rapport with experts and educators on HIV and AIDS, and the state of the epidemic in Ghana among others.
The Media Specialist for PEPFAR, Dzid E Kwame, in her opening remarks on Thursday, said PEPFAR was a United State government initiative to address HIV and AIDS, and help save the lives of Persons Living with AIDS (PLWA).
She noted that the relief, since its launch in 2003 by the then U S President George W Bush, had provided about $ 90 billion in cumulative funding for HIV and AIDS prevention, treatment and research.
Miss Dzid indicated that PEPFAR involved the United State Agency for International Development (USAID), the U S Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Department of State and the Department of Defense (DOD), in extending relief services to the world.
The Media Specialist emphasised that her outfit for the past 18 years, had sought to achieve HIV and AIDS epidemic control in more than 50 countries globally.
Ms Dzid added that “the American people will continue to speak against stigma and increase awareness and knowledge”.
She said journalists in Western, Western North and Ahafo Regions by the workshops, “are tutored by experts to increase their knowledge in HIV issues, build their reporting skills and use technology effectively for professional enhancement.”
“Together let’s end inequalities, AIDS and pandemics. I urge government and other key stakeholders to make strides towards ownership and sustainability of the HIV response for our generation”, the Media Specialist noted.
Ms Dzid expressed gratitude to the partnership between Ghana and America, ACEDEV and the Asutifi South District Chief Executive, Mr Robert Dwomoh Mensah, among other stakeholders for supporting the activities of PEPFAR to fight HIV and AIDS.
The Ahafo Regional Correspondent of United Television, Mr Joe Power, on behalf of the beneficiary journalists, promised to increase awareness, improve the lives of PLWA and to help address stigma and discrimination.
FROM EMMANUEL ADU GYAMFI, GOASO