Staff from HIV and sexual health charity Terrence Higgins Trust’s (THT’s) Woking centre are to run an HIV awareness drive in Surrey, with events for students across the county. The team will run two information events, first at Farnham College on Thursday 10 February, and then at the University of Surrey on Tuesday 15 February.
In 2009, there were 4,207 people diagnosed with HIV in the South East. This is a 7% increase from 2008. In addition, one in four people with HIV in the region remain undiagnosed, so have HIV without knowing it. THT is launching these information events to provide students with support on all aspects of sexual health, including how to guard against HIV and where to get tested if they have put themselves at risk. As well as offering free, confidential advice, THT’s trained staff will also hand out free condoms.
Martijn Wams, Centre Manager for THT in Woking, said: “With the numbers of people living with HIV in the region increasing, it’s really important we invest in this kind of targeted HIV prevention and awareness programme locally. We want young people to know that HIV testing and sexual health services are just as normal a part of their healthcare routine as anything else. We’re really looking forward to these sessions and are hoping lots of people will come along to benefit from the expert advice and information on offer, all in total confidence.”