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Sofa session - HIV and AIDS

The Bible tells us to love with actions (1 John 3:18).

But is there really much we can do against a virus which is infecting 33 million people around the world?

A disease that every 14 seconds leaves another child orphaned, and is undoing years of development work?

You’d be surprised...


Kick off your debate!

Download nowEverything you need to start your sofa session on HIV and AIDs.


We know change begins when people talk. But change will only happen if people take action. Here are our top tips for transforming passionate discussion into world changing action.


Visit the stopaids campaignto join the demand for access to essential HIV treatment for people in developing countries via a patent pool.

This would bring down the price of HIV treatment for people in the developing world and make complicated medication easier to take.

And how about finding out about HIV support groups in your area – there may be one connected to your local GPs or community centre. See if you can get involved.



2011 marks 30 years since HIV was officially recognised. So how about a 30s themed evening? Get people to dress up either in 30’s style clothes (suits, or vests and trousers for men, elegant close-fitting dresses and strings of pearls for women, hats for everyone!).

Alternatively, do fancy dress with people dressing as someone from the decade (Superman, Neville Charmberlain, Laurel/Hardy, Charlie Chaplin,Amelia Earhart, Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz…).

Play swing, jazz and blues music and provide a chill-out zone – how about screening The King’s Speech (George VI came to the throne in 1936). For refreshments provide dainty sandwiches, small cakes, ginger ale, and of course, cups of tea!

Sell tickets in advance and explain that any profits are going to Christian Aid – a development agency that works, amongst other things, on issues of HIV. Explain the link between the 30s-themed night and it being 30 years since HIV was officially recognised.



Measure out and place the following piles of rice around the room.

Explain that each grain of rice represents a person, and label them as follows: 305g (11oz) representing the 18,560 people who have ever died of HIV-related illness in the UK. 933g (2lb) representing the 56,000 people who died of HIV-related illness in a single year in Zambia in 2007. 4.5kg or 10lb representing the 270,000 children worldwide who died of HIV-related illness during 2007.

Let these piles of rice be a visual representation of the impact of HIV around the world.

Put some music on and encourage people to get physical as they pray – walk around, touch the rice, sift it through their fingers.

At the end of the time of prayer, people could take a grain of rice away with them to remind them to pray and take action to bring about change.

And, at the end of the session, you’ve got plenty of rice left to make a huge chilli to share!

(Thanks to Stan’s cafefor creating this idea and providing the measurements.)



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