First Free Condom Store Launched in India


 

A global charity on Wednesday launched a free condom store in India to try to reduce new cases of HIV/AIDS in a country with the world’s third highest number.

Now, you can get a box of free condoms home-delivered. A global charity, AIDS Health Care Foundation’s (AHF), on Wednesday launched ‘Love Condoms,’ as a measure to reduce new cases of HIV/AIDS in a country with the world’s third highest number. In India 2.1 million people are infected with HIV according to the United Nations, although the rate of infection is falling.

“We encourage individuals and organisations to send in a request of minimum one box (144 pieces). Delivery will be made within a week to any major city of India,” said Dr V Sam Prasad, AHF’s programme director for India.

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This is the first time free condoms for “all” have been introduced in the public domain here. Though the government provides free condoms to high-risk groups, over the years NGOs working with sex workers transgenders, Males having Sex with Males (MSM) and intravenous drug users (IDU) have complained about frequent stock-outs. “In 1999, the government began supplying condoms to dropping centres like Delhi Network of Positive People (DNP+), but discontinued it in 2004. The government supply has gradually trickled,” said 37-year-old Suzanne, a gay activist with DNP+.

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At the launch event, Terry Ford, Chief of Advocacy and Policy, AHF said she was unhappy with the services being rendered by the Indian government to HIV-infected people. “Government-run anti-retroviral therapy clinics close by noon everyday. How can you expect an HIV person to come in the middle of the day, leaving his/her job to seek therapy. We feel very frustrated. We work with governments all over the world but there’s nothing like Indian bureaucracy,” she said.

To Place an order

Request can be made on toll free number 1800 102 8102 or via an email to freecondomstoreahf@gmail.com

Figures Speak

As per National AIDS Control Organization, 21 lakh persons live with HIV in India, but only 12 lakh are registered with the government. The missing difference include high risk groups like sex workers, MSMs and IDUs.

 

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