Dynamic duo: Rock Ed's Gang Badoy teams up with DOH Secretary Dr. Esperanza Cabral

The paradigm for spreading ideas and sharing information has changed in recent years. With social media networking, TV, radio, and the Internet, everything is viral nowadays. Gossip, news, ideas, marketing campaigns—everything spreads like wildfire, and within moments of release, hot items are retweeted, shared, embedded, and emailed by an information-hungry society. In the more tangible world, word on the street—and in bars, clubs, galleries, malls, concert halls, and other venues—travels faster and often carries more credence than what we learn in lecture halls, conference rooms, and classrooms.

Rock Ed Radio, a non-profit volunteer group working to educate people through unconventional means, knows this well—and makes the most of it. The organization brings complex, socially relevant ideas to the youth through a wide range of venues: rock concert halls, art galleries, theaters, blogs, radio talk shows, even Twitter and Facebook home pages. Rock Ed has brought awareness of issues such as poverty, political issues, justice, and calamity relief to the masses, and now the group’s indefatigable leader, Gang Badoy, has set her sights on another cause: HIV/AIDS awareness.

Recently, the group partnered with the Department of Health under the leadership of controversial Secretary Dr. Esperanza Cabral to create a sustained and accessible campaign for HIV/AIDS awareness in the country. Gathering a group of creative thinkers and DOH officials, Badoy launched the tentatively titled “Safety Series,” which pushes safer sex and greater awareness in the light of the AIDS epidemic. The series is meant to serve as an umbrella campaign for HIV/AIDS awareness, generating more publicity for existing campaigns and delivering the disparate messages in a single, coherent, and easily absorbed statement.

Though faced with the challenge of reducing such a complex problem into a few easy-to-digest-and-absorb lessons, the group has made all-important initial steps, starting with a Rock Ed Radio forum with Secretary Cabral and HIV-positive writer and awareness advocate Wanggo Gallaga. With continuous meetings and information sessions, the support and expertise of the DOH, the power of social media, and the creative genius and dedication of its volunteers, the Rock Ed Safety Series is set to spread HIV/AIDS awareness in a most apropos manner—through the power of a viral campaign.

If you’re interested in helping, contact Rock Ed Radio through email at radio@rockedphilippines.org. As the campaign shapes up, you can also help by being part of the viral network and spreading information about events, activities, and other developments as they happen. For information about the AIDS epidemic, call the DOH AIDS hotline at 743-0512.
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