During half-time in the Liverpool v Southampton match on Saturday, the world’s largest AIDS ribbon will be laid out on the Anfield pitch to raise awareness for World AIDS Day 2012 and Living with HIV, Standard Chartered’s global HIV and AIDS education programme.
The 49 metre long ribbon will be rolled out across the pitch by staff from Standard Chartered and the HIV/AIDS charity AVERT. This will be the first time that the AIDS awareness ribbon, recognised as the largest in the world by Guinness World Records, has been displayed in the UK.
AVERT, a UK-based international HIV and AIDS charity, is providing the ribbon on behalf of globally renowned HIV expert Dr Surya Rao, who created it in his home country of India to raise awareness of HIV and AIDS across the globe.
'Liverpool is scheduled to play Southampton on World AIDS Day making it the perfect opportunity to display the red ribbon and reinforce our commitment to the global fight against HIV', said Mark Devadason, Group Head of Sustainability and Regions at Standard Chartered. 'Our thanks go out to both Liverpool and AVERT who have made this activity possible, and enabled us to show our solidarity with those living with HIV and commemorate those who have died from the illness'.
Ian Ayre, Managing Director, Liverpool FC, added: 'Living with HIV is an important cause, and one which the Club is proud to support. When an individual wears a red ribbon they are demonstrating that they have joined the global fight against HIV so we are delighted to be able to use the Anfield pitch to display the ribbon and raise awareness for HIV and AIDS'.
HIV remains a global issue and is of particular relevance in a number of Standard Chartered’s markets across Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Every day, another 7,000 people worldwide are infected with HIV. Liverpool FC’s involvement in the World AIDS Day activity will help to draw attention to the fact that in 2011 there were 939 people living with HIV in Merseyside, representing a 220% increase over the course of the previous 10 years.
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