Since 1993, the NGO Gestos – Seropositividade, Comunicação e Gênero has been working in Recife, promoting awareness about HIV/AIDS, gender equality and human rights. The institution has gained national and international recognition for its multidisciplinary approach to welcoming people living with HIV/AIDS.
The entity emerged from the desire to address issues related to HIV and AIDS from a broader perspective. As explained by Jô Meneses, project coordinator at the NGO. “Gestos appears from this perspective, together with other NGOs that existed to fight strongly for public policies so that people had access to quality treatment, available in the SUS, as we see that is still happening today. It was a very big struggle for this agenda to be seen in another way.
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Aiming to strengthen immunization among people in this community, Gestos launched a pioneering project in Recife, entitled “Guidance, active search and monitoring of immunization for PLWHA”, the project aims to guide and encourage access to vaccination for this population in the 14 municipalities of the metropolitan region of Recife.
Jô explains how the project works. “We are going to hold two meetings to educate people about the vaccine, talk about the importance and explain which are the most important vaccines for PLWHA, outside of those on the normal schedule, but some that are specifically important for those living with HIV. The active search is to look at these cards, inform people where they can have vaccination rooms and also monitor this movement”.
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Currently, around five hundred people are assisted by the organization with legal assistance, psychotherapy and the promotion of human rights. With the increase in the anti-vaccine movement, the NGO reinforces the call for updating the vaccination card.
For the coordinator of Gestos, it is essential to show the effectiveness of vaccination “We think that the best thing for us to overcome this type of movement is to have information, to show it in practice, to bring concrete examples to the population that we are linked to”, ends.
To learn more about the work of the NGO Gestos or to seek information and support related to HIV/Aids, visit the website gestures.org.br.
Source: BdF Pernambuco
Editing: Vanessa Gonzaga