WFP staff cottoning on to AIDS awareness

WFP staff have discovered that skill with a needle and thread can translate itself into a global message with the unfurling of their World AIDS Day patchwork quilt at WFP’s Rome headquarters

WFP staff have discovered that skill with a needle and thread can translate itself into a global message with the unfurling of their World AIDS Day patchwork quilt at their Rome

The WFP AIDS quilt weaves together our collective imagination and shows the world how diverse yet unified our human experience is
WFP Executive Director, James Morris,

headquarters.

The two and a half metre-squared quilt combines embroidered and printed sections, some of which bear messages from personnel affected by AIDS, created by WFP country offices to provide an outlet for staff's reaction to the disease.

WFP Executive Director, James Morris, said: “The WFP AIDS quilt weaves together our collective imagination and shows the world how diverse yet unified our human experience is.”

Brainchild

The blanket, which has contributions from countries as far-flung as Peru and Indonesia, was the brainchild of Geneviève Merceur, Robin Landis and Heather Hill who represent human resources and the HIV/AIDS Service at headquarters.

Following last year’s initiative where staff wrote their thoughts about AIDS on a thirty-metre-long red banner, regional offices were asked for contributions which either showed countries’ efforts to combat the disease or staff’s personal experiences.

Spread the word

In the tradition of the Californian AIDS memorial quilt which was started in 1987 to commemorate the lives of people lost to AIDS, WFP’s quilt aims to raise awareness about HIV/AIDS.

“One of the best ways to stop the spread of AIDS is through raising awareness – spreading the word about prevention and breaking the silence too often pervasive in our lives,” said Geneviève Merceur.