World Council of Churches

A worldwide fellowship of churches seeking unity, a common witness and Christian service

You are here: Home / Resources / Documents / WCC programmes / Diakonia / EAA / Live the Promise / World AIDS Day 2017 – Call for Prayers and Reflections for Children and Adolescents Living with HIV

World AIDS Day 2017 – Call for Prayers and Reflections for Children and Adolescents Living with HIV

The World Council of Churches - Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance is seeking prayers and reflections on the rights of children and adolescents living with HIV to have access to prevention, testing, treatment, care and support.

12 October 2017

The World Council of Churches - Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance is seeking prayers and reflections for a World AIDS Day Order of Service focused on the rights to Prevention, Testing, and Treatment of children and adolescents living with HIV.

Order of Service

The WCC-EAA is preparing materials for use in World AIDS Day worship services with emphasis on the rights of children and adolescents living with HIV. We will develop two Orders of Service, one for Christian faith communities and one for Interfaith services. We are seeking prayers and reflections for inclusion in these Orders of Service.

Please send your contributions to Francesca.Merico@wcc-coe.org, with a copy to masonj@unaids.org, by 26 October 2017.

World AIDS Day

December 1 is designated every year as World AIDS Day, a day when the world focuses on the AIDS epidemic, celebrating the progress that has been made and committing to finish the work and finally end AIDS as a public health threat.

Faith-based organizations have been, and continue to be, vital to the effort, providing hope and support to millions of people affected by the AIDS epidemic. In recognition of World AIDS Day, many faith communities choose to dedicate their weekly worship services to issues related to HIV and AIDS.

In 2017, the WCC-EAA is urging member churches and participating organizations, as well as other faith communities, to focus their World AIDS Day services on children and adolescents living with and affected by HIV and AIDS.

Children, Adolescents and AIDS: A justice issue

Five million children aged 0-14 have died from AIDS-related illnesses since the start of the HIV epidemic and that number continues to rise with 100,000 paediatric AIDS-related deaths in 2015 alone. 91 percent of them lived in sub-Saharan Africa. The majority of these deaths were preventable! The problem is that among the 2,100,000 children aged 0-14 who are now living with HIV, less than half are receiving the treatment they need to live a long and healthy life. Without treatment, half of children with HIV will die by their second birthday. A critical reason for the low treatment coverage is the low detection rates. Globally in 2016, only 43 percent of HIV-exposed infants received the recommended diagnostic test within the first two months of life.

Adolescents and young people represent a growing share of people living with HIV worldwide and HIV is the second largest cause of adolescent deaths globally. In 2016, 260,000 adolescents aged 15-19 were newly infected with HIV. Only 13 percent of adolescent girls and 9 percent of adolescent boys aged 15-19 in sub-Saharan Africa have been tested for HIV in the past 12 months and received the result of the last test. No test result means no access to treatment!

People of faith cannot remain indifferent to the 438 children who are newly infected with HIV each day and to the 328 children who die of AIDS-related causes daily. We cannot remain silent knowing that many adolescents do not receive proper information about HIV and AIDS and knowing that all these infections and deaths are entirely avoidable!

Resources

  1. World AIDS Day 2016 Prayer Service
  2. Khutbah and Sermon Guides on children and HIV for Religious Leaders from IMA Health World, INERELA+ Kenya and AIDSFree
  3. Children and HIV: Christian Sermon Guide for Religious Leaders, 2017, Strengthening High Impact Interventions for an AIDS-free Generation (AIDSFree) Project
  4. Start Free, Stay Free, AIDS Free (UNAIDS)
  5. For Every Child, End AIDS: Seventh Stocktaking Report, 2016, UNICEF
  6. Resources for Paediatric HIV Advocacy Toolkit, Drugs for Neglected Diseases Initiative
  7. Advocacy Tool Kit on Pediatric HIV Treatment, 2016, Organization of African First Ladies Against HIV/AIDS & EGPAF
  8. Acceleration Children’s HIV/AIDS Treatment Initiative: Promising Practices and Lessons Learned from Implementation of the ACT Initiative, 2017, PEPFAR & Children’s Investment Fund Foundation
  9. Expert Patient Programme Improving antiretroviral treatment access and quality of care for infants, children and adolescents - Zambia & Zimbabwe, 2016, Paediatric AIDS Treatment for Africa (PATA)
  10. Clinic-CBO Collaboration (C3) Programme Linking health facilities and communities for improved PMTCT and paediatric HIV outcomes, Policy Brief, 2017, Paediatric AIDS Treatment for Africa (PATA)
  11. Project REACH Re-engaging adolescents and children in HIV treatment and care, 2016, Paediatric AIDS Treatment for Africa (PATA)

The Live the Promise Campaign of the Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance seeks continued priority on the response to HIV and AIDS, the elimination of stigma, and a significant faith-based contribution to the vision of ‘getting to zero’ – zero new infections, zero discrimination, and zero AIDS-related deaths. To learn more, please visit www.oikoumene.org/livethepromise

The Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance, an ecumenical initiative of the World Council of Churches, is a global network of churches and related organizations committed to campaigning together on common concerns for justice and human dignity.