Our target is to raise £10,000 for Cricket Without Boundaries.
We have both been inspired by the work that CWB does in Sub-Saharan Africa and believe passionately in the difference the charity to many hundreds of thousands of lives.
Please help support our efforts: https://www.justgiving.com/thegreatcwbcycle/
HIV/AIDS in Africa
In 2011 there were an estimated 23.5 million people living with HIV/Aids in Sub-Saharan Africa. This figure represents a staggering 69% of the global HIV/Aids burden, which currently stands at 34 million. UNAIDS believe that there have now been over 1.2 million Aids-related deaths in the region and during 2010 alone there were approximately 1.9 million new HIV infections. Over 90% of children who acquired HIV in 2011 live in sub-Saharan Africa, mainly due to the fact that 92% of pregnant women living worldwide with HIV reside there also.
As so many signs in the region state, you are either affected or infected by HIV/Aids. Both directly and indirectly, HIV/Aids is destroying lives, often causing discrimination and dividing communities.
CWB – Educating through Cricket
Cricket Without Boundaries work as part of the global initiative that is striving for Zero New Infections and an end to HIV/Aids. As well as medical treatment, there is a growing understanding that education is key to delivering sustainable long term behavioural change. As well as the obvious health and participation benefits sport can bring, there are wider social, educational and community benefits that go hand in hand with it. Cricket Without Boundaries are proud to be the delivery partner for ICC (International Cricket Council) and their THINKWISE campaign which was established to use the power of cricket to help tackle key issues around AIDS. The ICC and its key partners realise that Sport has a major role to play in helping to bring people together to address key issues and encourage social change.
At Cricket Without Boundaries, we travel to five different African countries, all of which are affected by the HIV/Aids epidemic. Whilst the statistics may vary from country to country, every community is affected in some way. Through cricket we are looking to break down the barriers of discrimination, empower individuals and educate about HIV/Aids prevention and testing.
Testing, Testing A…B…C
At CWB we use cricket as a tool for educating about HIV/Aids awareness. By working closely with local schools, cricket authorities and domestic organisations we ensure that our methods are current and appropriate in respect of sexual health education. The ABC method is widely recognised throughout Sub-Saharan Africa and we understand that it is a combination approach. This can then be adapted to fit the population, the audience’s age and the stage of the epidemic. Above all, we advocate condom use to everyone, both young and old. As is made clear by UNAIDS, ”faithfulness is only protective when neither partner is infected with HIV and/or both are consistently faithful” -marriage does not necessarily protect people from HIV infection. At CWB we strongly advocate Testing as crucial to everyone so that they ‘Know their Status’.
- ABSTAIN from engaging in sex
- BE FAITHFUL to one’s partner
- CONDOM use, which is correct and consistent
- TESTING to know one’s status
The CWB approach goes beyond the teaching of ABC and T. Cultural and behavioural characteristics of some communities can give the ABC’s limited impact, especially among women and young girls. The ABC relies upon equality and it is often the case that many women and girls cannot freely negotiate safe sex with their partners, or choose to abstain from sex. Women in sub-Saharan Africa remain disproportionately impacted by the HIV epidemic, accounting for 58% of all people living with HIV in the region in 2011. As part of our work we are looking to eliminate gender inequalities and gender-based abuse & violence, as well as increasing the capacity of women and girls to protect themselves from HIV. This illustrates the importance of reaching both boys and girls early to reinforce the message of gender equality, something Cricket Without Boundaries strives to do when coaching.
The CWB Approach
- To mainstream safe-sex and protective behaviours to halt the spread of HIV through cricket coaching and training sessions
- To ensure equality of treatment for all who are coached, irrespective of age, gender or their HIV status
- To help combat gender inequalities by having boys and girls training, learning and playing together
- To encourage informed decision making and help-seeking behaviours to continue to prevent new infections
- To address stigma and discrimination surrounding the disease and experienced by those living with and affected by HIV
- To build the technical expertise of local cricket authorities and groups.
- To provide essential equipment that allows more children to play the game.
- To empower children by learning a disciplined sport.
Since 2005 CWB has already improved the coaching skills of over 2,500 youth and adult cricket coaches. The charity has also coached over 65,000 children, who will be the next generation of cricketers, passing on skills and knowledge in cricket grounds, schools and communities, both about cricket and about the disease.
Moreover, lives will be saved as positive and healthy behaviour spreads amongst children due to increased awareness about HIV and how to prevent it, rather than the spread of HIV itself.
CWB is about developing coach education and participation in playing the game, but this goes hand-in-hand with raising awareness of HIV/AIDS to save lives and empower those who participate in the project’s activities.
- Empowering coaches to confidently inform participating children of the dangers of HIV/AIDS through innovative associations with the language and form of cricket
- Stressing the ABC approach – abstinence, be faithful to your partner and condom use: effective HIV/AIDS prevention is based on all three being utilised not just one
- Making the case for regular VCT testing
- Discussion of the limits of anti-retroviral drugs and the debilitating effect of AIDS on society and the development of the country
- The equality of treatment for those who have HIV/AIDS