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New HIV project targeting the African community seeks to raise awareness

PUBLISHED: 18:02 05 June 2014

A new HIV awareness project is set to launch in the borough to support residents in high-risk communities.

The Redbridge Council for Voluntary Services (Redbridge CVS) and HIV charity Positive East have teamed up to run the six-month scheme, which may be extended if successful.

The borough has a high rate of HIV, with the figure for diagnosed HIV in those aged 15-59 2.75 people per 1,000 people, compared to 1.7 for England as a whole.

Swati Vyas, the health partnerships manager at Redbridge CVS, said: “HIV rates are higher in Redbridge compared to London and the idea is to target the African community; that is why we will be doing this awareness raising.

“The idea is to recruit people from these communities who can speak African languages to work as HIV health buddies.”

The health buddies will be going out into the community to signpost, visiting places such as libraries.

If anyone is interested in becoming one, they can contact Ms Vyas by calling 020 8514 9626 or emailing swati@redbridgecvs.net.

See next week’s issue for more on the project.

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