The AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) has launched a campaign tagged: “Break the Bias”, calling for the elimination of all bais against women in society.
In a statement in Abuja ahead of International Women’s Day (IWD), AHF said to “Break the Bias” means shedding the suffocating stereotypes, stigmas, and discrimination that keep women and girls worldwide from realizing their true potential and succeeding.
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“We are honoured to have such extraordinary women throughout our AHF family.
“By sharing some of their touchings and empowering testimonials on International Women’s Day – we’re showing how their perseverance and bravery led to breaking harmful biases in their lives, bringing about positive change in their communities and in the lives of their friends and families,” said Terri Ford, Chief of Global Advocacy and Policy for AHF.
“We must also not forget that while the effects of COVID-19 have subsided in several wealthy countries, the pandemic is still creating hardships disproportionately for women, particularly in developing countries.
“Now, more than ever, we must work to ‘Break the Bias’ to ensure women have all they need to succeed, including equal access to health care, education, and employment.”
In Nigeria, AHF Nigeria said it would work with its exceptional mentor mothers in Kogi State, one of AHF Nigeria program states, in order to accelerate progress in pediatric HIV diagnoses and treatment.
“This is in recognition of the stopgap role that mentor mothers and indeed expert clients play in bridging the unmet need for children and adolescent antiretroviral therapy.
“Our hope is to tackle identified barriers to pediatric testing and treatment while scaling up what works through the efforts of these women as they break the bias and ensure an HIV free world for women and their children.
“This effort will see us converge in Kabba, with women from across our program sites in Kogi State for a dialogue/refresher session to bring the mentor mothers up to date and as an avenue to celebrate their exceptional courage in the face of stigma and discrimination and for their unwavering commitment and tenacity in the midst of myriad challenges,” the statement said.
Dr Echey Ijezie, AHF Nigeria Country Program Director (CPD), said, ‘‘the avenue to work with women on our program and, in extension, women generally, is one we usually embrace because of the significant contributions of women to the successes we are recording, especially when we consider the impact of COVID-19 on households in the country.
“AHF Nigeria ensures we prioritize women and especially indigent clients by providing palliatives to bridge the impact of COVID-19 on their wellbeing, the opportunity of the IWD becomes a key avenue to structurally impact these women making a big impact in our program and to ‘Break the Bias’ of the issues holding them back from reaching their full potentials.’’
In addition to live and virtual IWD 2022 events in many of AHF’s countries of operation, the foundation will also conduct a social media campaign featuring successful women from all its global bureaus.
It added that these inspiring stories of their personal journeys epitomize how they have worked to “Break the Bias,” overcome obstacles, and succeed in their lives—all while empowering others along the way.