Sex-for-Fish Practice in Kenyan Fishing Communities Contributing to Spread of HIV
September 16, 2008
A practice within some Kenyan fishing communities in which young female fish sellers develop sexual relationships with fishermen and middlemen in exchange for fish is exposing a new generation to HIV, IRIN/PlusNews reports. According to statistics from the United Nation's Food and Agriculture Organization, HIV prevalence among Kenyans in the fishing industry was 30.5% in 2006.
Sabina Achieng -- a fish trader and official at the Dunga Fishermen and Women Association, a nongovernmental organization that is working to end the practice -- said, "We have lost many of our people to HIV and it is sad to see many of us engage in such risky sexual behaviors," adding, "It is true that these things happen -- we are now partnering with other like-minded organizations to create awareness."
According to IRIN/PlusNews, the group is working with another local NGO, OSIENALA (Friends of Lake Victoria) and Radio Nam Lolwe (Radio Lake Victoria), a local broadcaster, to create media messages targeting the fishing community in Nyanza. The United Kingdom-based medical organization Merlin also is working with beach communities to raise HIV awareness through local music, dance and drama competitions (IRIN/PlusNews, 9/12).
This article was provided by Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. It is a part of the publication Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report. Visit the Kaiser Family Foundation's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.