Mobile app used to map condom dispensers in Philippines
Campaigners and activists in the Philippines have set up free condom dispensers in collaboration with restaurants and shops in Manila to promote safe sex and fight a worsening HIV epidemic. They have developed a smartphone app through which they can send out the locations of the condom dispensers to the public. Here is more on it.
The campaign is being led by the 'Save the Children' and 'LoveYourself' social groups. They started a Safe Spaces project to tackle the low condom use in the country. Under this, they have installed 30 condom dispensers in Manila to promote HIV awareness. The organizations aim to set up more dispensers across 150 locations in the country.
"It's like Pokemon Go when you run out of Poke Balls, you need to refill at a nearby station. This is an innovation, it has never been done before. Now people can access condoms safely and without stigma," LoveYourself founder Ronivin Pagtakhan said.
According to the United Nations, Philippines has seen the fastest growth of HIV/AIDS cases in the Asia-Pacific region. It registered a 140% jump in new infections over a time period of six years starting from 2010. Government officials said that most of the HIV/AIDS cases were transmitted through unsafe sex.
According to government data, two out of three new HIV infections affected men between the ages of 15 and 24. It also said that gay men and transgender women are more at risk of procuring HIV/AIDS.