During the 1980s, musician Elton John watched many of his friends and loved ones suffer and die from HIV and AIDS. Lost in a drug-fueled haze, he says, he did nothing to help people with the disease.
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At the International AIDS conference, a female condom fashion show raised awareness about the rising need for more female condoms. Olwin Manyanye of Zimbabwe shows off one of the dresses decorated with a second-generation female condom, called "FC2."
The organizers of the show aimed to reduce the taboo of talking about female condoms and the role they can play in stopping HIV infections. Kristina DeRose (left) from Philadelphia, Cramonte Hairston (center) and Iesha Gadsden of Washington, prepare backstage.
Olwin Manyanye shows off her dress decorated with the latest type of female condom, called "FC2." These second-generation condoms went on the market in 2009. They're more comfortable and increased the popularity and demand for this method of contraception method.
A fashion show at the 19th International AIDS Conference aimed to raise awareness of female condoms — the only woman-initiated means of contraception that can prevent HIV infection. Diamond Gillespie has a laugh before going on stage. The top of her dress is decorated with female condom wrappers.
The show was coordinated by a Dutch group, whose goal is to make female condoms available, accessible and affordable around the globe. Rishona Hines from Woodbury, Conn., wears a dress made in the Netherlands.
The first event was an intimate fashion show Monday night, featuring dresses made with female condoms. Highlights of the show included a beautiful baby-doll dress layered with white condoms and a yellow miniskirt covered with condoms twisted into roses.
Since the early years of the AIDS epidemic, talk of a cure became almost taboo. In the past few years, advances in prevention and treatment became increasingly effective. Now some researchers say it's time to shift focus and resources to finding a cure. So why now, what's changed, and how close are we? If you have questions about the search for a cure for HIV/AIDS, give us a call: 800-989-8255. Email us: firstname.lastname@example.org. You can join the conversation on our website as well. That's at npr.org.
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