Take action against AIDS
Help girls understand what HIV is
Act out the way the virus attacks the body to boost knowledge and empathy.
- Tell the girls that their body is like a town and their blood vessels are roads linking one place to another. In the town there are three kinds of traffic:
- red Blood Cells (RBCs) – vans delivering oxygen and nutrients
- white Blood Cells (WBCs) – police protecting the body from infection
- platelets – highway maintenance teams fixing the blood vessels.
- Ask for a volunteer to play the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and two more to be cold germs. Give everyone else either a piece of red, white or brown paper so they can be RBCs, WBCs or platelets.
- Now act out this story. As everyone moves around the room, tell the girls there has been a cut in one corner of the room.
- Platelets move in to stop the blood leaking, but some of the RBCs are lost. Then cold germs run to the nose in another part of the room and the WBCs quickly go there to stop the infection.
- Now HIV comes along – a virus that attacks the WBCs. The girl playing HIV tags as many WBCs as she can.
- The germs then invade another part of the body, but this time there aren’t as many WBCs available to help, so the body becomes very ill.
- Finish by explaining that when the body is unable to resist infection and repair itself because of HIV, this condition is known as Aquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS). AIDS is the final stage of the HIV infection.
- You may like to inform the parents or carers of the girls in your group about the content of this session.
Remember that any of the girls might have HIV or AIDS before starting, and to consider how this activity would impact them.
Activity around health and wellbeing can sometimes encourage disclosures from girls about their own experiences. Make sure you can support girls fully by reading our guidance on managing concerns, and see our list of support organisations for further guidance.
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