Federation of Liberian Youth (FLY) youth employment officer, Jerry B. Tarbolo Jr. has alarmed that the spread of the global pandemic HIV/AIDS in urban cities in Liberia is reaching a higher peak and has the propensity to impede the growth and development of youth in the country.
Presenting a paper at a one-day lecture series organized by the Alliance of none-governmental organizations (NGOs) working with vulnerable population and advocating for the rights center in Monrovia on Tuesday July 7, 2009. The lecture series was held in the court yard of actionaid-Liberia in Congo Town.
Quoting a report recently released by the Liberia Institute for Statistics and Geo-services Information (LISGIS), Mr. Tarbolo said among other things that more young women in the Liberian society have been identified as those who stand a poor chance of being vulnerable to be affected with the HIV/AIDS virus in urban areas than those in the rural communities.
According to him, about 2.1 percent of people in urban areas are affected with females carrying the highest ratio. Giving some statistical problems associated with the factor, Mr. Tarbolo calls, ‘hard drive’ in human as something that serve as motivating factors for people to engage in acts that influence the spread of HIV/AIDS.
On the theme, “youth at a Work Place” the FLY Executive said the need for food, shelter, sex and self preservation are what cause people to behave the way they do to see themselves going through life.
He said sex being a need and poverty a striking situation facing many persons a lot of young people involve themselves in the act, which has greater influence on the spread of the disease.
He asserted that the effect of the spread of the disease will not only face the victims alone, but will also affect the nation because it shall bring decrease in the population that constitutes the human resource of the country.
Mr. Tarbolo said as women advocacy groups are all around encouraging girls and women to make use of the available opportunities to improve their lives, young girls should take the advantage to do what will improve them instead of giving themselves in sex trade that quickly spreads the HIV/AIDS.
In his recommendation to both the hosting organization and government for possible action, Mr. Tarbolo said youths should advocate for the accessibility of the Anti-Retrovirus drug to everyone who is a sufferer of the disease, training and information be carried out to prevent social discrimination and prejudice against AIDS sufferers and government should create more voluntary and testing centers where people cases will be confidentially maintained.
About 28 participants from various organizations attended the lecture series, while two other speakers, including actionaid Communication officer, E. Chesty Gbongon and actionaid Project Coordinator, Quitina B. Cooper in a separate remake called on the participants to be encouraged and remain focused as they grow to become more mature in society.
The Alliance is a network of 18-member organizations that comprise women group, media and youth organizations.
Since its formation in 2008, it has extended its advocacy activities and workshops in both the interior and around Monrovia, speaking against discrimination of HIV/AIDS sufferers and gender based violence.