The 13th of February marks International condom day. It was not long ago that this date was recognised internationally – in 2007 – but each year activities dedicated to the celebration of this day become more and more diverse and relevant. In 2015, International condom day’s slogan is “Condoms are cool”.
The history of condoms goes back at least 400 years. They were invented in the beginning of the XVI century by Doctor Charles Condom for Henry VIII and made from the intestine of a sheep. The first one has survived to this day and can be found in Lund, Sweden, and dates from 1640.
According to some sources, condoms were used even in ancient Egypt and Rome.
Condoms are a trustworthy means of protection from sexually transmitted infections (STI), which includes HIV infection. In contemporary Russia the issue of prevention of these infections is more relevant than ever. In the words of the head of Federal Scientific-Methodical centre for the Prevention of and Fight Against AIDS Vadim Pokrovsky, daily there are 80-100 cases of HIV registered in Russia. The epidemic has become feminized and the main method of transmission is becoming heterosexual contact.
On February 13th E.V.A. and the charity Humanitarian Action, with financing and organisational support from AIDS Healthcare Foundation (Russia) are giving out “Love” condoms and flyers as part of rapid HIV testing in the Nevsky region of Saint Petersburg. In the informational materials, the main myths connected with condoms will be dispelled in an accessible and clear manner and with supporting data.
Additionally, in collaboration with ITPCru, a short video that plays out the bashfulness of women in the moment when they bring up using a condom was made. The main message of the clip was: “Propose that he use a condom – it’s natural and simple”.