Sunday, December 1st. I was in Kombo after a week of meetings and also celebrating Thanksgiving with other Peace Corps volunteers. I took the 8am express bus heading east to Soma (that bus, by the way, fills up by 7:15am and its like a Black Friday Sale every time you try to board it). My counterpart for the HIV/AIDS Bike Trek was in Soma for the World AIDS Day celebration. He works for the National AIDS Secretariat, and he invited me to check out the event. After 3 hours on the bus, I arrived in Soma just as the World AIDS Day parade was about to get started. Not only did I find my counterpart at the event, several other Peace Corps volunteers and trainees were on hand. One volunteer was part of the parade. She lives near Soma and works with many health organizations nearby. The other volunteers and trainees just so happened to be in Soma that day, not realizing there was an event going on. It was a lot of fun getting to hang out with the PCVs/PCTs at this event, and also listening to the HIV/AIDS talks at the event. My project, the HIV/AIDS Bike Trek, wrapped up just 2 weeks ago. In the project 30 PCVs biked to 4 villages teaching grade 7-11 students about HIV/AIDS and ways to speak out against stigma and discrimination associated with HIV/AIDS. Overall, these last few weeks have been a good 2 weeks in terms of HIV/AIDS awareness and learning.
Note: More info on the HIV/AIDS Bike Trek in a later post.