Wednesday, June 6, 2007

DukeEngage - India (Summer 2007)

Duke students will volunteer at Sahara House Centre for Residential Care & Rehabilitation, a New Delhi-based organization that seeks to empower people facing difficulites due to substance abuse, HIV/AIDS, and low socio-economic status. Sahara's mission is to empower people and strenghten communities. To follow this, students will assist in different areas, assessing the needs of Sahara's clients and suggesting how the orginization can better serve those it reaches out to.

Students in India:
Saad Mir (Trinity '07)
Sweta Patel (Trinity '07)
Nabihah Kara (Trinity '08)
Kedar Kirtane (Trinity '08)
Arnav Mehta (Trinity '08)
Aneesh Kapur (Trinity '09)

Other Students who helped prepare
for these projects over the semester:
Nandini Palaniappa (Trinity '08)
Priyanka Sista (Trinity '10)

1 comment: said...


There are some simple steps all HIV-positive tourists can take regardless of their destinations to minimize chances of undue customs delays or outright deportation:

* Look healthy. Travelers who appear to be ill are likely to be targeted for indepth questioning or inspections.

On the Road With HIV: A Guide for Positive Travelers

* Be discreet and polite.Don't draw any undue attention to yourself that could cause customs officials to pull you aside.

* Don't advertise the fact that you're HIV-positive. It pains me to have to give that kind of advice, but you might not want to wear a PLWHA t-shirt.

* Keep your anti-HIV medications in their original bottles, and do not attempt to hide the containers. If you're hiding them customs officials may think they contain contraband and may hold you to verify that they are permitted into the country.Opening packages or taking pills out of their prescription bottles will delay your time in security(more info).

*Pack extra medicine and supplies when traveling in case you are away from home longer than you expect or there are travel delays.

*If you are taking injectable medications (e.g., Fuzeon, insulin, testosterone) you must have the medication along with you in order to carry empty syringes(more info).

*Depending on the circumstances it may be worthwhile taking along a doctor’s certificate (in English) which shows that the holder is reliant on the medication and that it has been prescribed by the doctor.Carry a copy of your prescriptions in your carry-on, purse, or wallet when you travel.

*You can ask and are entitled to a private screening to maintain your confidentiality. Show copies of your prescriptions and/or your medication bottles and if you have any problems ask to see a supervisor.

In general, the above points apply to entering countries with ambiguous or restrictive regulations: as long as HIV positive status does not become known, there will be no serious problems for a tourist. However, if someone is suspected of being HIV positive, or if the authorities have concrete reasons to believe they are, entry may be refused. Since october 2008 non-immigrant US visas are granted to HIV-positive people who meet certain requirements, instead of waiting for a special waiver from DHS(more info).

My philosophy on the whole issue is that it's not an issue, so I don't present it as one.And I've never had any problems over the years of extensive travel.
People vs. PLWHA

They have laws against us not only prejudgments.They detest us and don't want us around.We are the new lepers.We deserve to be treated like this,we are a danger to the public health and we are morally dubious individuals.We have been warned about the virus and still managed to catch it.Therefore we are stupid,too.It might be true...
So what now?
Somehow this virus works slowly and leaves enough vitality in our bodies and minds to still react to their bigotry and intolerance.We have the virus but we are still vigorous,strong and sticking to our guns. Consequently,our reaction is to show them we are in deed a threat,not because of the fact we carry the virus,but becuse we are willing to fight for our survival and not going to die quietly.Do not go gentle into that good night !