One group in class discussed Goal 6 of the millennium Development Goals. The goal was to combat HIV/AIDS, malaria & other diseases. They chose to discuss HIV and AIDS in South Africa. First off they described what HIV/AIDS was. Say your body and health is a house. Around your house you have T cells protecting it. They ward off bad diseases and illnesses that can do harm to your health. When the HIV virus enters your body, T cells do not recognize them as bad, therefore the body does not kill them. The HIV virus then continues to kill T cells so eventually the body cannot ward off any bad illnesses. When your body gets below a certain amount of T cells, you can then considered to have AIDS. The group then read two stories about people who were affected by the HIV/AIDS virus. One man had had to take some hundred pills a day to keep his T cells surviving. He became really weak and he eventually died of phenomena and other illnesses that his body could not fight off. The group also talked of a lady in South Africa who created an organization to help prevent and take care of HIV/AIDS victims. Some people in South Africa with HIV/AIDS are locked in their homes by family members left to die. It is with these horrible conditions that HIV/AIDS needs to be eradicated. With prevention and correct knowledge of the disease that the world can start to combat this deadly disease. I think the group did well. The stories made the presentation interesting. I would have liked a little more information about how others countries combat the disease and what kind of medicine people actually take. Are organizations in South Africa really going to make a difference? What about the governments? What have they done to help?
On Thursday, an honors group gave a presentation on Goal 8 of the Millennium development Goals. Goal 8 was developing a global partnership for development. They focused on Communication and Technology in Somalia. With today’s violence and fighting in Somalia they believed that if technology and communication improved, the country would develop in positive ways. They focused on three things: mobile phones, wireless Internet, and fueling communications. In Kenya, cell phone users increased lately from 15,000 to 6 million people. They have grown economically and socially as a country. With cell phones, voting increased because of increased communication with test messages. Farmers were also to compare markets around the world. Technology dramatically changed in Kenya. Wireless Internet would help in the schools with learning. An organization called One Laptop Per Child is working to bring technology to schools in developing countries. They will only work with countries that have stable governments though. Somalia is not considered to have a stable government yet. In the past few years cell phone users in Somalia have increased form 1.1 to 1.6%. It is not a lot but a start. I believe that technology would help develop Somalia, but I also believe that technology is a benefit of having a developed country. There has to be a government, schools and the knowledge of markets. Technology will not cure Somalia. Somalia has to build a government, and then build schools and then technology will come. With out the wisdom and strong foundation as a country, I do not believe they will last. How will a cell phone help a country, if the user has no idea how to use it?