As fans around the world count down to the ICC Cricket World Cup beginning on 19 February with a match in Bangladesh, players and squads from the 14 competing countries are teaming up to help combat the AIDS epidemic.
Under the banner, ‘Think Wise: The Global Cricket AIDS Partnership,’ the International Cricket Council, UNICEF, UNAIDS and the Global Media AIDS Initiative – along with numerous local partners – have launched a campaign asking fans around the world to get the facts, protect themselves and avoid stigmatizing those in their communities who are living with HIV and AIDS.
The campaign will run throughout the ICC Cricket World Cup via television and online media, and with in-stadium messaging in the three countries hosting the tournament – Bangladesh, India and Sri Lanka. It is also being rolled out in schools and communities in match-playing cities to engage young people in HIV/AIDS education. The school programme is a critical facet of the ‘Think Wise’ campaign.
Of the estimated 33.3 million people living with HIV worldwide, nearly a quarter are from major cricketing countries. India and South Africa alone have nearly 8 million people living with the disease.