Caitlin Chandler, a New York University student studying in the “NYU in Ghana” program, is a lead organizer of a concert to raise AIDS awareness as part of World AIDS Week. The free concert - which is sponsored by her employer, the West Africa AIDS Foundation, New York University, the United Nations Population Fund, and a group of Ghanaian musicians - is expected to draw up to 30,000 attendees. The concert is scheduled to take place on Friday, December 3, at Independence Square from 5 pm to 12 midnight (local time) in Accra, Ghana.
It is the largest planned AIDS Day event for Ghana, and may be the largest event in West Africa, and represents a remarkable collaboration among major musicians of Ghana.
The concert is free; however, organizers will accept donations to benefit HIV/AIDS relief.
The concert is going to be hosted by the legendary Reggie Rockstone, the man who invented the popular West African “hip-life” music.
Prominent African bands and musicians who have agreed to play include:
- Okyeame Kwame
- Soul Black
- Tic Tac
- Shasha Marley
- KK Fosu
- Mobile Boys
- Abrewa Nana
The concert will feature an original song by a group of artists on the HIV/AIDS pandemic, which will be contemporaneously released to Ghanaian radio stations.
Ms. Chandler, a junior in NYU’s College of Arts and Science and the concert organizer, said, “This is an attempt to change the way we talk about HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment by utilizing the artistic community here in Ghana to target vulnerable populations. We want to use it to encourage public dialogue, to increase awareness of prevention practices, to dispel myths and reduce the stigma, and to mobilize Ghana’s youth to take action against the pandemic.”
New York University, the nation’s largest private university, is an internationally prominent research university. Each year, more students from NYU - which has dedicated sites in London, Paris, Madrid, Florence, Prague, and Accra, Ghana - study abroad than from any other U.S. college or university. The “NYU in Ghana” program opened this fall; some 50 students per year travel to Ghana for a semester of study.