“Let Communities Lead”:  Celebrating World AIDS Day 2023


World AIDS Day is observed every year on December 1 to spread awareness about Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) caused by Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and support those living with the disease.

This year, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said that the theme is ‘let communities lead’. The UN body said that the theme has been decided to mark the pivotal impact communities have had in shaping the HIV response.

This Day is more than a celebration of the achievements of communities; it is a call to action to enable and support communities in their leadership roles.

World AIDS Day 2023 will highlight that to unleash the full potential of community leadership to enable the end of AIDS:

  • Communities’ leadership roles need to be made core in all HIV plans and programs and in their formulation, budgeting, implementation, monitoring, and evaluation. “Nothing about us without us.”
  • Communities’ leadership roles need to be fully and reliably funded to enable the required scale-up and be properly supported and remunerated. “Not ending AIDS is more expensive than ending it.”
  • Barriers to communities’ leadership roles need to be removed. An enabling regulatory environment is needed that facilitates communities’ role in the provision of HIV services, ensures civil society space, and protects the human rights of all, including marginalized communities, to advance the global HIV response. “Remove laws that harm, create laws that empower.”
  • Communities are leading World AIDS Day, and across the world are shaping the events and tailoring the detailed calls to their specific needs. Through photos and videos shared by groups on social media and aggregated by UNAIDS, people will be able to witness the kaleidoscope of events taking place, be inspired by determination and hope, and hear communities’ calls for action.

Education remains a cornerstone in the prevention of HIV/AIDS. The Day initiatives focus on disseminating accurate information, promoting safe practices, and encouraging regular testing. Empowering individuals with knowledge is fundamental in curbing the spread of the virus and dismantling misconceptions.


  • https://www.unaids.org/en/2023-world-aids-day
  • https://reliefweb.int/report/world/let-communities-lead-world-aids-day-report-2023

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Publisher: Namita Nayyar (WF Team)