Are we going hunting?" --Rachel Starnes upon entering a game reserve where a lion park was located.

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Who's Holding the Disease?

Stacey Garfinkle

At the clinic today we played a game called "Find the Ball." We split into two teams and lined up facing each other. Then we squished together as much as possible, and we would pass a tennis ball to each other behind our backs. The other team would guess who had the ball behind her back (hence the name).

Team

The girl who ends up with the ball has HIV in this game of Find the Ball. (Alice Keeney for the Washington Post)


After each team went once, we switched out the plain tennis ball for one that had "HIV/AIDS" written on it. When we played the next round, we pretended that the girl holding the ball "had" the virus. It was almost impossible to tell from the front who was holding the ball, which was supposed to signify that you can't tell who has HIV/AIDS just by looking at it. It was something that I already knew, but the game's message really hit home.

It's more than likely that some of the girls at the camp have HIV, but it's so strange to think that about girls who we have just started to get to know. When I hear the statistics about HIV/AIDS, I always envision some fictional population that has the disease and not real people who I've talked to and spent time with. What was just a simple game that reiterated information that I already knew really put the whole situation into perspective and helped to make the situation more real. When it comes down to it, statistically it was most likely that one of these girls could have HIV and I wouldn't know just by looking, or for that matter, that any of the countless people we've met could be infected.

By Stacey Garfinkle
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