In the following section you will find information on campaigning activity from faith groups at an international, regional and national level.
“Religion is a key element of community organisation and social structures worldwide. Seventy percent of the world’s people identify themselves as members of a faith community. Their faith shapes their perceptions of themselves and of others. It conditions how they respond to their neighbours. It affects how they interact with people living with HIV – the majority of whom are themselves members of a faith community.”
---Scaling up effective partnerships (December 2006)
Studies and mapping exercises show that faith-based organizations are involved in up to a quarter of the HIV and AIDS response world-wide, particularly in treatment, care, and response to orphans and vulnerable children in the poorest areas around the world. Even more, many people living with HIV, affected by HIV, responding to HIV, are people of faith, and faith is a motivating factor for action, compassion, and hope.
Religion and religious communities, however, have also been barriers to an effective response through silence, denial, stigma and discrimination.
Increasingly, though, faith-based organisations and religious leaders are becoming stronger and vital advocates for overcoming stigma and discrimination, promoting all evidence-based means of prevention, integrating people living with HIV in decision-making and programmes, promoting universal access, and calling on all – including religious communities – to fulfil the promises they have made to overcome the pandemic.
Faith-based communities and people of faith will be very involved in actions and commemorations for this World AIDS Day, from including the theme in worship and prayers to joining with others in their communities in vigils and actions.
For more information on this please see Faith in Action on World AIDS Day