Love4Gambia begins!

This July, I will be running all the way across a country in Africa to keep kids alive through HIV education.  Let me tell you more about this and how you can be a part of this unique campaign.

Three years ago, I spent just under 50 days in The Gambia in West Africa, volunteering as a nurse with the Nova Scotia-Gambia Association (NSGA).  I worked with junior and senior high school students from all over the country, along with their teachers, in a summer school focused on life-saving reproductive health and HIV prevention education.  These bright and eager kids learned to be peer health educators who returned to their schools to share HIV prevention message with their communities- teaching them to be safe, keeping them alive.

With the money raised by my run across the country, Gambian children and youth will continue to receive this important education and be trained as peer health educators through the Nova Scotia-Gambia Association, a registered Canadian charity.   In a country that does not offer sexual health content in classrooms, the roles these kids play in preventing HIV and saving lives is enormous.  I know that this money and these programs make a difference.  NSGA has been making a difference in West Africa for the last 25 years.   I have seen it happen.  I serve on the NSGA Board of Directors.  In 2009 alone, the NSGA trained 3,934 youth peer health educators.  NSGA staff also tested 2760 people for HIV and presented 144 video shows about HIV, Malaria and Landmines in locations such as community markets.

Imagine a teenage girl in Canada.  This girl will learn how to prevent HIV at school.  It’s culturally accepted for her parents to give her the “sex talk.”  Reproductive health services are easily accessible.   Later, this girl can expect condom or dental dam use and monogamy in her marriage.  Now imagine that you are part of creating this in The Gambia.  You are part of the solution.  You are part of helping Gambian youth to grow up, hold a job, and live to see children of their own.

Please support my Love4Gambia campaign and become part of the solution.  Contributions can be made quickly and easily online. If it’s important to you, your business logo can be placed on our Love4Gambia website and our Bluenose Marathon team clothing with a minimum donation of $500

Thank you for taking the time to help me help kids in The Gambia.

Sincerely,

Erin Poirier

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