From Julius B. Kezi, Kafanchan
In a bid to combat the spread of HIV/AIDS and other Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STD) a non-governmental organization, Youth Network on HIV/AIDS In Nigeria (NYNETHA) has launched a training programme for commercial Sex Workers, in Kafanchan, Jema’a Local Government Area of Kaduna State.
Speaking while flagging off the three-day train the training workshop in Kafanchan at the weekend, NYNETHA’S Monitoring and Evaluation (M & E) Officer, Mr. Victor Onateh, said the training was a pilot scheme for 13 young female commercial sex workers, who would in turn train 10 other each, thrice a month for three months.
Onateh said he would not only be physically present at all trainings, but that those found to be consistent will be empowered in Income Generating Activities (IGAs), such as tailoring, soap and pomade making, among other trades that would enable them be self-reliant to discourage them from commercial sex work, which makes them vulnerable to contacting and spreading HIV/AIDS and other STDs.
He said there were many reasons that attracted female youth into commercialization of their bodies for a living, including loss of parents, lack of support, unemployment or forced marriage to those they do not love.
Onateh said the workshop will train participants on STDs, laying emphasis on HIV/AIDS and how it is contacted, effect on victims, treatment, how it could be avoided and stemming its spread.
Condom distribution to each participant, as a part of the training, according to him, is not intended to encourage indiscriminate sex but to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS and other STDs.
Facilitator of the training and staff member at NYNETHA, Ms. Ngozi Aneme, said the objective of the training was to equip participants with the knowledge of HIV/AIDS and other STDs, how to avoid contacting and spreading the disease as well as its management when infected.
The workshop, she added, will also train participants on how to set realistic goals, ensure their accomplishment and how to get and manage multiple financial sources without selling their bodies.
Chairman of NYNETHA in Jema’a Local Government, Mr. Sam Iliya, glorified God and appreciated the efforts of government, international bodies and NGOs like NYNETHA in the fight against HIV/AIDS, which is prevalent in the area.
IIiya assured that the chapter will do its best to enlighten the targeted section of the society as well the public in general for the attainment of set goals.