The Deputy Head of Monusco in charge of humanitarian affairs leads a crusade against HIV and AIDS

Kim Bolduc urged peacekeepers to respect the HIV prevention rules. Photo MONUSCO/Joseph Tabung Banah

14 Feb 2018

The Deputy Head of Monusco in charge of humanitarian affairs leads a crusade against HIV and AIDS

Joseph Tabung Banah

Goma, 7 February 2018 - During her recent contact tour in the North Kivu Province, the deputy chief of MONUSCO expressed MONUSCO's determination to scale up the fight HIV and AIDS. Accompanied to the field in Goma by the MONUSCO HIV/AIDS Section's outreach team, Ms. Bolduc urged MONUSCO peacekeepers to respect the HIV prevention rules in order to properly carry out their mission in the DRC. She reminded them that it is by respecting these preventive methods that one can change behaviour and then respect the rules of the UN in the workplace.

In a working session with the HIV/AIDS Section, Ms. Kim Bolduc recommended hard work, with a well-defined plan of action, and other key elements that would reverse the trend in the fight against HIV and AIDS in the DRC. For an effective response to HIV, she said that community efforts are needed, and that it is important to get people to better understand the importance of HIV prevention in their lives and in their communities. She recalled that it is the duty of those involved in the fight against HIV and AIDS to help communities to better understand HIV preventive methods. She went on to say that local initiatives are needed to prevent children from engaging in risky activities that could expose them to the risks of HIV.

She called for family-centred approaches to reach out to the local community, adding that she supports programmes that encourage family members and communities to take care of themselves, and it is through awareness raising that they must understand. In addition, she highlighted the important role of the HIV/AIDS Section in such initiatives, expressing the importance of seeing field activities that benefit the people.

Conscious of these issues, the Chief of the HIV/AIDS Section and the Senegalese contingent commander thanked Ms. Kim for her support and her determination to improve the quality of outreach activities on HIV and AIDS.

Speaking as special guest during the UN weekly News conference, the Deputy Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General in the DRC, outlined her plan of actions.  She also highlighted her recent contact tour that took her to Kasai, Kasai Central, Tangayinka, and North Kivu provinces, as Humanitarian Coordinator in the DRC and Resident Coordinator of UN Agencies, Funds and Programmes. She remarked certain precarious humanitarian situations, and confirmed that she was determined to spare no effort to deal with such issues.

It should be noted that the protection of civilians is key in the current mandate of MONUSCO. In this light, the HIV/AIDS Section is working closely with national institutions, civil society, non-governmental organizations, associations of people living with HIV, the private sector, religious denominations, and other UN agencies, for an adequate response to the unprecedented challenge of AIDS as a threat to peace and security in the DRC and around the world.