A public service announcement (PSA) featuring Japan’s First Lady Akie Abe speaking out on HIV/AIDS has just been released online and is being aired on MTV channels in Japan and across Asia. In collaboration with the MTV Staying Alive Foundation, Mrs. Abe is appealing to young people to “join us in breaking the silence” in order to raise awareness of HIV/AIDS in Asia, which has the second largest AIDS-related death toll after sub-Saharan Africa. The first lady was joined by a group of young Japanese HIV/AIDS activists to record the message, which will be aired in both English and Japanese to maximize its impact across the region.
A dedicated AIDS campaigner and member of the UNAIDS and Lancet Commission, the first lady promised in a speech given last year at UNAIDS that she would work the rest of her life to end AIDS by “amplifying the voice of the voiceless.” This public service announcement is part of a larger campaign to raise awareness of HIV/AIDS across the region. With support from the Nippon Foundation, JCIE’s Friends of the Global Fund, Japan, is working with Mrs. Abe to coordinate the collaboration among the MTV Staying Alive Foundation and partners in Japan.