Cork, Co. CorkNovember 12, 2018

The Sexual Health Centre is launching PhotoVoice HIV on the 28th November at 5:30pm in St Peter’s Church in the lead up to World AIDS Day 2018. This will be the first PhotoVoice Exhibition in Ireland that will represent the lives of people living with or affected by HIV. The submissions are open to everyone, regardless of their gender, age or location. The project is accepting submissions from people living with or affected by HIV, comprised of a maximum of two photos and a description of the concept/meaning behind them. The selected photos will be digitally exhibited in St Peter’s, The Vision Centre, Cork City and will remain on display until World AIDS Day on December 1st. The PhotoVoice HIV project aims to unveil the realities of living with HIV and give people affected by it an opportunity to share their personal stories in a gallery setting. In doing so, it will shed light on existing misinformation surrounding the topic of HIV, challenge related stigma and discrimination and raise awareness towards the reality of living with HIV through the medium of photography.

There are approximately 8,000 people living with HIV in Ireland. However, a recent study has unveiled a lack of public knowledge in relation to HIV, its transmission and implications. This lack of knowledge supports stigma and has a negative impact on the lives of people living with HIV and their families.

 “We will be launching a Research Report on the night that looks at the Lived Experience of Young People living with HIV in Ireland.  It was while reading this report that we decided we needed to do something for World AIDS Day this year that truly represented the voices of not only our clients but all people living with or affected by HIV,” says Catherine Kennedy, Centre Manager. “PhotoVoice has the capacity to be deeply moving and gives the power to the person holding the camera!  I want the voice of People Living with HIV to be heard and sometimes this can be difficult if an individual does not want to go public with their diagnosis due to the levels of stigma and discrimination – PhotoVoice gives them the chance to do this but still have their privacy.”

The team in The Sexual Health Centre focuses on providing screening, support and information services to individuals across Cork city and county. We stand in solidarity with People Living with HIV. We know that People living with HIV with an undetectable viral load will not pass on HIV to their sexual partners. We want this exhibition to spark a conversation across Cork society and tackle the stigma which still exists in Ireland today”, says Dr. Martin Davoren, Executive Director of the Sexual Health Centre.

Photographs can be submitted to photovoicehiv@gmail.com until November 18th. The project alongside the latest report which looks at the lives of Young People living with HIV will be launched in St Peter’s art gallery on November 28th at 5:30pm. All welcome.

The PhotoVoice project is a part of a month of HIV-focused initiatives launched by the Sexual Health Centre, culminating in the National World AIDS Day parkrun on December 1st.

About The Sexual Health Centre

The Sexual Health Centre is a Not for Profit, Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) that was established in July 1987 as Cork AIDS Alliance with a focus on supporting individuals living with AIDS and HIV. It is a forward-looking organisation whose knowledgeable team provides exhaustive and non-biased information, facilitates open dialogue and offers personal, free, and non-judgemental support to concerned groups and individuals regarding their sexual health, wellbeing, and sexuality.

Website:www.sexualhealthcentre.com

Media Contact

Nadia Reckmann nadia.reckmann@sexualhealthcentre.com

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