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13.10.2003 Regional News

More children orphaned by AIDS at Beposo

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Beposo (Ash), Oct 13, GNA- A study conducted by the New Dawn for Better Life, a Community-Based Organisation (CBO) in anti-AIDS campaign has said HIV/AIDS is on the increase in the area.
Mr S.E. Wiafe, a former District Chief Executive and chairman of the CBO, announced this at the inauguration of a Virgins Club formed by the organisation at Beposo on Sunday.
With a population of less than 5,000 people, the study showed that the town has 427 orphans representing about 10 percent of the total population.
They are aged between 1-16 years with 236 of them being boys and 191 girls.
He said the study aimed at helping to build a database on the devastating effect of the HIV/AIDS on the Beposo community so as to guide the planning of interventions.
Mr Wiafe said another problem the study uncovered was the high school drop out rate among the orphans.
He said the CBO is using the data base to embark on intensive community education and sensitisation, peer support programmes for schools and the formation of virgin clubs for girls to help reduce the rate of the disease HIV/AIDS.
It is also planning care and support packages for the orphans as well as income generating activities for teenage mothers. Mr Kofi Baryeh, a pharmacist, noted that the refusal by some families to accept the fact that their relatives were dying from HIV/AIDS disease was making the fight against the spread of the infection more difficult.
They tend to attribute these deaths to curses and superstition when clinical diagnosis and evidence point to the HIV/AIDS. 13 Oct 03

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