Nairobi Hosts First Women's AIDS Conference. 04/07/07
Canadian Broadcasting Corporation News(CBC)
The world's first women's conference on AIDS opened in Kenya on Wednesday, with thousands of international delegates set to discuss how to fight rising HIV cases among women.
Key issues at the conference, which runs in Nairobi until July 10, will include feminization of the HIV pandemic, gender inequality, health care and treatment, sexual and reproductive rights, women's leadership and economic empowerment.
Dr. Peter Piot, executive director of UNAIDS, and Mary Robinson, former president of Ireland and United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, will be two of the main speakers.
The Young Women's Christian Association (YWCA) conference has attracted over 2,000 participants from around the world, according to media reports from Nairobi.
"The fact that this conference is being held here in Africa is not without significance," said CBC Africa correspondent David McGuffin. "The vast majority of those infected with HIV and AIDS are here on this continent. This continent has the highest infection rate in the world. And most of those people on this continent that are infected are indeed women."
Because many Africans are subsistence farmers and most of those farmers are women, families are losing more than just their caregivers, McGuffin pointed out