College gays new target in AIDS fight

Updated: 2014-01-01 16:13


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Intervention should be carried out among college students in terms of AIDS prevention, although compulsory tests are not feasible due to lack of legal support, according to Wang Ming.

Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have played a key role in HIV/AIDS outreach and services.

HIV carriers welcome services from NGOs, as many NGOs have been founded by HIV carriers themselves. NGOs have easier access to special social groups, including gays, lesbians and sex workers, who are difficult for government organizations to reach.

In Guangzhou, Friendsteam was set up in 2006 to carry out AIDS education projects for college students.

Chen Du, founder of the organization, said sex education in colleges lags behind, and many students from rural areas know little about AIDS.

Education and health resources have not been effectively combined in AIDS prevention, he said.

Though many free tests target male homosexuals, heterosexual transmission should also not be ignored, as some male students buy sexual services, according to Chen.

Friendsteam organizes speeches, arts exhibitions, parties, classes and seminars and invites gays to participate in these events as part of its AIDS prevention efforts.

The Chongqing Rainbow Working Group and its website, China Rainbow Online, were founded in 2003 and 2005, respectively, to offer care and help for gays, lesbians, and sex workers in AIDS prevention.

AIDS prevention and sexual health knowledge should be taught in classes, and automatic condom-selling machines should be installed on college campuses, some students suggested.

Controlling the transmission of the HIV virus among MSMs will be a key task in Guangzhou's plan to fight AIDS, and more social organizations will be encouraged to join, according to Tang.

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