Carl, why are you supporting this campaign?
CF: This is my home town, and if I can help make my city’s health better, I will. People have all sorts of prejudices about HIV, but the truth is that 70% of the people who are getting HIV in Nottingham are straight, and nearly half are middle-aged. So it’s not somebody else’s problem – we all need to pay attention.
Did You know that there was an HIV problem in Nottingham?
CF: No not at all, until I got involved with the charity I didn’t realise that Nottingham has one of the worst rates of late diagnosis of HIV in the country. Anything I can do to raise awareness about testing has got to be a good thing – we need more people to get on the life-saving treatment they need, before they become really sick or even die.
What can sports people achieve with campaigns such as this?
CF: I think it’s just about lending our visibility to good causes. Sports people of all kinds have a certain public profile, and people are interested in what we do – so it makes sense for charities to try and make use of that.
If by being involved, that encourages people to think about whether they have put themselves at risk and that makes them get tested for HIV and other infections, then why wouldn’t it help?
Would you encourage other sporting stars to get involved with the saving Lives Charity?
CF: Yeah of course, if a sporting star from every major city in the UK got involved we could have a major impact on raising the public’s awareness about HIV and how they can look after themselves.
Any final messages to your fans?
CF: Yeah its simple just get tested; it could save your life!