Kalimpong, July 23: World Vision, an NGO, with the help of the local health department, has launched a programme in schools to educate students on the hazards of HIV-AIDS.
Such a programme was first held at Dr Graham’s Homes, which was attended by 170-and-odd students of Class XI of the institute. Discussions, skits, and documentaries on HIV-AIDS formed part of the day-long programme. “We will conduct another programme in the school, which will be for students of Class IX,” said Biju Abraham, the programme manager of World Vision. Other schools will also be involved in the project.
The objectives of the initiative are to provide basic facts about HIV-AIDS, dispel myths about the disease, provide life skills for protection and create a positive attitude among students towards those afflicted with the deadly disease. “We are following the module prepared by the West Bengal State AIDS Prevention and Control Society,” said Abraham.
With drug addiction rampant in Darjeeling, experts have warned that the hills could well be sitting on a time bomb called HIV-AIDS. “Many are addicted to drugs, and the use of common syringes can prove dangerous,” said E. Lyngdoh, the assistant chief medical officer of health, Kalimpong.
Apart from health officials, students of Nurses Training Centre here will also participate in the campaign.