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Panaji: August 23, 2019

                                                                                       Bhadra 1, 1941

          On the occasion of International Youth Day, 2019, the Red Ribbon Club was inaugurated at Mushtifund Saunstha’s Mushtifund Higher Secondary School, Cujira Bambolim, today. The function was held in association with Goa State AIDS Control Society(GSACS). Director of Health Services Dr. Jose D’Sa was the Chief Guest for the function while Professor and HoD, Department of Microbiology, Goa Medical College, Bambolim Dr. Savio Rodriguese was the Guest of Honour.  Project Director of GSACS and Dy. Director, Directorate of Health Services Smt. A. Fiona Gomes, Key Note Speaker for the function and Lecturer in Preventive and Social Medicine at GMC Dr. Umesh Kamat, Chief Medical Officer of Directorate of Health Services Dr. Chandrakant Porob, Principal of Mushtifund Higher Secondary School Shri. Navnath Parulekar, Managers Shri. Suhas Sardessai and Shri. Ramchandra Savordenkar were also present on the occasion.

          The dignitaries inaugurated the Red Ribbon Club by pasting Red Ribbons on the Tree made by the students. While addressing the gathering Dr. D’Sa urged the students to inculcate good habits and healthy lifestyle practices. He also recommended them to get proper knowledge about HIV AIDS. “25% of India’s population is between the age of 16-24. The future of this country is on your shoulder so stay healthy and Fit,” he said. He also gave them an insight into Prime Minister Shri. Narendra Modi’s Fit India Movement which will be launched on August 29, 2019.

          Guest of Honour Dr. Rodriguese in his address requested the students not to get scared of HIV AIDS. “HIV-AIDS is considered as a stigma in our society; however we must learn not to discriminate the patients suffering from it.  Between 1992-2005, the country saw a steep rise in the number of HIV infections. The Red colour symbolises Power, Zeal, Love and Compassion which we must bestow upon a HIV infected person,” he said.

          In his key note address Dr. Umesh Kamat informed students about HIV-AIDS and , precautions to avoid it. “HIV is transmitted through blood, from pregnant mother to child. However, the rate of its transmission through unprotected sex is very high. HIV is not the only Sexually Transmitted Disease. There are many more. Hence, practising safe sex can be the only precaution. Many a times, a person is unaware that he/she is infected by the HIV virus. Hence, timely test is the solution and is done for free at GMC, Bambolim,” Dr. Kamat informed.

          Earlier, Dr. Gomes welcome while Smt. Jenise administered the Red Ribbon Club Oath to the students. Posters made by Mast. Tanmay Dessai, Ms. Shruti Gawas and Ms. Nikita Dewang were released on the occasion. The dignitaries later distributed prizes of competitions held to mark the occasion. In All Goa Quiz Competition, G.R. Kare College of Law, Margao, S.S. Dempo College of Commerce and Economics, Kujira and Goa College of Pharmacy bagged the 1st, 2nd and 3rd prize respectively. In All Goa Poster Making Competition P.E.S College, Ponda, .S.S. Dempo College of Commerce and Economics, Cujira and C.E.S College of Art, Science and Commerce, Cuncolim bagged the 1st, 2ns and 3rd place respectively.

          Smt. Shraddha Bandekar compered the function while Dr. Chandrakant Porob proposed the vote of thanks.

DI/NB/ JA/JS/ 2019/567