Photo: Andrew Read/Oxfam Aus

There are over 40 million people living with HIV and AIDS worldwide. AIDS claims over 8,000 lives every day. We know how to prevent the spread of HIV and AIDS and yet last year over four million people became infected with the virus.

HIV and AIDS is fuelled by poverty and it’s one of the biggest social, economic and health challenges in the world – and in our neighbourhood.

How and where we work

The HIV and AIDS epidemic impacts across all of Oxfam’s work and can no longer be treated solely as a health issue. We work directly with communities in Vanuatu and Papua New Guinea.

Human rights, gender equality, access to information, sexual and reproductive health rights are all essential in the battle against the virus. Oxfam and its partners around the world are working to address the major obstacles of discrimination, stigma, the unequal position of women and the lack of public awareness to prevent the further spread of the disease and to protect people living with HIV and AIDS.

Oxfam supports specific HIV and AIDS programmes which respond to the epidemic in a direct way. We work with partners and AIDS-affected communities on:

  • prevention and education
  • fighting stigma and discrimination
  • improving access to treatment and care
Credit: Dave Tacon/OxfamAus
Residents of Nuigo village, Papua New Guinea. Oxfam and its partners have been conducting AIDS awareness programmes across the Pacific and Southeast Asia.

HIV and AIDS and basic rights

Oxfam believes everyone has the right to a life of dignity and opportunity. HIV and AIDS pushes many families into poverty and poverty makes people more vulnerable to the disease. It is vital that this cycle is broken.

The numbers of women living with HIV and AIDS is on the increase. In some parts of Southeast Asia and the Pacific, infection rates among women now exceed men.

HIV and AIDS in the Pacific

In the Pacific, more than 90 percent of HIV infections reported in 2004 were recorded in Papua New Guinea, prompting predictions that PNG is fast becoming the new frontline in the battle against HIV and AIDS in the Asia-Pacific region.

Latest news

NZ should demand US scale back

July 26, 2012

NZ should demand US scale back stricter access rules to generic drugs in TPP talks. Despite commitment to end AIDS, the US government is introducing stronger intellectual property rules through trade agreements, like the TPPA currently being negotiated with New Zealand and seven other countries - and bilateral pressure that will undermine the fight against AIDS by devastating the ability of developing countries to access affordable anti-retroviral medicines.

International AIDS conference leaves health activists despairing

July 26, 2010

World leaders made no real commitments to ensure universal access to prevention, treatment and care for AIDS at this week’s International AIDS conference in Vienna.

Female condoms ignored by donors

July 22, 2010

HIV and AIDS women’s health advocates at the International AIDS Conference have criticised the lack of funding and policy support from international donors and governments for female condoms, which are a critical woman-initiated tool for fighting the HIV epidemic.

Latest stories

June 13, 2010

For many years Oxfam supported the drama group, Wan Smolbag, with their work to increase awareness and demystify issues around reproductive health, in particular sexually transmitted diseases and HIV and AIDS.

August 15, 2006

Oxfam is using experience gained in South Africa to help respond to the looming HIV and AIDS epidemic in Papua New Guinea, as Pacific Programme Coordinator Anne Lockley reports.

April 25, 2006

The Oxfam Water for Survival Programme is working with local partner ATprojects to provide safe water for people living with HIV and AIDS and their carers.