In June 2017 I will be travelling to Rwanda, Africa as part of my University studies, I will be working closely with a charity that delivers fun cricket coaching sessions in the aim to spread awareness of HIV. HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) is a global epidemic, but sub-Saharan Africa carries a disproportionately large burden of the disease, with an estimated 69% of all people infected with HIV living in this part of the continent.
HIV remains an on-going challenge for the countries of sub-Saharan Africa. While there has been real progress in the last 10 years - with falling infection rates and fewer HIV-related deaths - the vast majority of people who live in these countries continue to either be infected or affected by the disease. There are currently 24.7 million people living with HIV, with 1.5 million new infections annually.
The project I am raising money for and will be thoroughly involved focuses on testing, prevention and reducing stigma by teaching children and communites through sports coaching.
It is also important to highlight the children and communities taking part in the cricket sessions find them extremely enjoyable an appreciate the volunteers (such as myself) that go out to Rwanda and spend time there.