Newly appointed Chairman of the National HIV/AIDS Commission, Dr. Henrick Ellis, speaking at the yesterday's press conference announcing his appointment, as Minister of Youth, Family and Sports Dr. Esther Byer-Suckoo listens.
DR. Henrick Ellis is the new Chairman of the National HIV/AIDS Commission.
Dr. Ellis, who was officially appointed yesterday, has been involved with HIV in Barbados for over decades and is a founding member of the National Advisory Committee on AIDS, the entity that preceded the Commission.
He is credited with forming the National AIDS Hotline and the AIDS Society of Barbados, a non-governmental organisation in 1990.
has represented Barbados at several International HIV
Conferences in Sweden, Canada, Italy and Germany among others.
He has avidly contributed to research in HIV and continues to be an advocate for HIV awareness, especially in the faith-based population with the formation of the Christian response to HIV.
coordinates the HIV
programme for the Anglican Diocese of Barbados
and has since 2003, trained numerous groups comprising clergy of all denominations as well as laypersons about HIV
In 2004, Dr. Ellis
was recognised for his
contribution to the medical field, particularly HIV
, and was awarded the Silver Crown of Merit in the National Independence Honours.
The Minister said that given Dr. Ellis'
extensive background in HIV/AIDS, he
is nothing more than a valuable asset to the Commission in dealing with the challenges that Barbados faces today.
"The challenges are many, while Barbadians have no lack of knowledge about HIV/AIDS - about how it could be spread and how it could be prevented, we are yet to see a real turnaround in the change of behaviours especially among our youth."
"The youth still are a very worrying demographic and so Dr. Ellis
is aware that among the many areas that he
will have to take charge of, one will be to oversee the changing behaviours in our young people," the Minister stated.
explained that the new Chairman's duties will include representing the Government of Barbados at international meetings on HIV/AIDS; helping to identify available technical assistance and sources of funding with agencies as may be required; monitoring comparative