C yclo drivers have been turned into mobile advertisers as part of the battle
against the spread of AIDS.
The drivers' ruling body, the Cambodian
Conductors Association handed out 600 T-shirts with the slogan "Time to Act"
written in English and "Fight AIDS Now" in Khmer.
The "Time to Act"
slogan is part of an international Aids awareness program, launched by NGOs and
the World Health Organization.
One wag was heard to comment that it would
have been better to act against AIDS by putting on a condom rather than a
Van Tooch, program assistant of PACT, which printed the shirts,
said: "We chose cyclo-drivers to wear our T-shirts because they drive around
Phnom Penh all day and can disseminate the important information on Aids
Other organizations that are involved in the AIDS awareness
program are Concern, Save the Children, Care, PSF, Redd Barna and World Vision.
and there has been considerable Cambodian involvement.
Nop Sotheara from
Redd Barna said: "Education is the first step. Giving the T-shirts with the
message will help people to understand what AIDS is about, then we can start the
second step. At the moment, condoms are not easy for us to buy."
Day sub-committee of NGOs meets monthly to develop the educational project. AIDS
awareness will also be an important part of Women's day on 8 March.
WHO are also launching a birth control program in the near future which will
include the free distribution of contraceptives, among them condoms.