AIDS activists say Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe's Matabeleland North province has become a hive of activities as the government and civic groups prepare for World AIDS Day commemorations.
The event will be held at the resort town next week, amid reports that 62,000 out of 109,000 children living with HIV and AIDS in the country are not receiving any ARV treatment.
Zimbabwe is hosting the African Union World AIDS Day on the first of December.
The Health Ministry’s director of HIV/AIDS and TB programs, Owen Mugurungi, reportedly says the government has intensified its “Know Your Child’s Status” campaign as part of preparations for the day, to raise awareness on the importance of testing children for the deadly virus.
Activists say the number could be higher as thousands of children, mostly orphans living in the rural areas, may not be aware that they are living with the virus.
AIDS activist Sipho Mahlangu, who is based in Victoria Falls, says some activities at the resort town include road shows, public displays, and soccer matches where teams bearing names such as ARV will clash.
Mahlangu says many activities have been lined up, and most people, including children, are expected to receive free AIDS testing Wednesday.