In global observation of World AIDS Day tomorrow, which is held annually on December 1st to unite people worldwide in the fight against HIV, MTV’s logo will wear the universally symbolic red ribbon on its channels and platforms in nearly 180 countries. MTV International will also launch a limited short-form series titled “Myths Debunked” on linear and digital, which discusses safe sex, getting tested and common myths around HIV/AIDS.
To commemorate both World AIDS Day and the 20th anniversary of the MTV Staying Alive Foundation (both of which fall on December 1st), parent company Viacom and UNAIDS also released new research that observed the perception of HIV/AIDS today. The survey looked at awareness levels of HIV/AIDS around the world and if people are taking preventive steps to avoid infection.
- On a global level, two-thirds of people think HIV/AIDS is an urgent issue today.
- Nearly three-quarters of people globally consider themselves educated on how to reduce the risk of acquiring HIV. However, almost half do not actively take measures to protect themselves. Globally, 44% of people do not actively take steps to reduce their risk of contracting the virus.
- Nearly half of people globally have also never been tested for HIV.
“Young people must have a seat at the decision-making table about their own lives,” said Michel Sidibe, executive director, UNAIDS. “Today’s young generation will make ending AIDS a reality.”
“Since its inception 20 years ago, the MTV Staying Alive Foundation has pioneered a youth movement in the relentless fight against HIV, proudly supporting youth-led initiatives and empowering change-makers across the globe,” said Georgia Arnold, Co-Founder and Executive Director of the MTV Staying Alive Foundation. “As we celebrate this important milestone, we acknowledge that while we have indeed made great strides, there is still more work to be done in pursuit of our goal of building a world where all young people are able to make informed choices about their sexual health and well-being.”
Earlier this week, the MTV Staying Alive Foundation also celebrated its 20th anniversary of fighting HIV/AIDS. The star-studded gala at Guastavino’s in New York recognized the foundation’s 20 years of campaigning around HIV and sexual/reproductive health and rights, and raised more than $570,000 toward the global fight to end HIV.
Grammy award-winning artist and AIDS activist Alicia Keys honored Viacom for its founding support of the organization by presenting an award to Viacom President and CEO Bob Bakish. Additional speakers and performers at the event includedJack Antonoff, Phony Ppl, Henry Luyombya, and Nelson Mandela’s granddaughter Swati Dlamini-Mandela.
The MTV Staying Alive Foundation promotes sexual and reproductive health and rights globally, by funding innovative youth-led programs and producing ground-breaking content – including the multi-award winning MTV Shuga—that encourages young people to get tested, practice safe sex, and live without stigma and fear. To date, the foundation has awarded more than $6 million in grants and directly educated more than 3.8 million young people across 70 countries about HIV.
For more information on World AIDS Day, visit www.worldaidsday.org.