Roehampton University students swap stigma for screening during HIV Testing Week

Students are swapping stigma for screening at Roehampton University as part of HIV Testing Week.

Statistics indicate that more than 100,000 people in the UK are living with HIV, with an estimated 1 in five unaware that they are carrying the virus.

In light of these figures free health screenings are taking place all week at the university, following a recent collaboration between the student union and Wandsworth health group The Brighter Partnership.

Bright Partnership spokesman Kilele Allam said: “Go back ten years and people used to have this stigma with HIV, they wouldn’t shake your hand because they believed that they’d get HIV.

“Knowledge is power, after all. We’re promoting greater knowledge, greater information.”

The Brighter Partnership is embracing all sections of the community regardless of gender, sexual orientation, religious background, ethnicity or immigration status.

The group was commissioned by Wandsworth council to offer free health checks and drop-in sessions across the borough.

These same health checks will be available at Roehampton University’s Student Union from 12-3pm until Friday November 28.

Student Union Vice President of Welfare, Rachael Blaney said: “We just want to say that it’s a real life issue, that it does happen and that it can affect anyone.”

KwaAfrica  is holding an event in Battersea on November 29, to coincide with World Aids Day which takes place on December 1.

For more information about The Brighter Partnership visit their website

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