The acclaimed singer songwriter and human rights campaigner Annie Lennox has received an honorary degree.
She has also given her backing to a University led study urging more support for children in Scotland living with HIV.
The music star, whose record sales exceed 80 million as a solo performer and with Eurythmics and The Tourists, was awarded the Honorary Degree in a ceremony at the Playfair Library.
Watch video of the ceremony and interviews with Annie Lennox and Viviene Cree about the HIV study.
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During the visit Ms Lennox helped make public the findings of a study by the University’s School of Social and Political Science which assessed the needs of children affected by HIV in Scotland.
Researchers at the University say that HIV remains a highly stigmatised illness and children impacted upon by HIV in Scotland need access to confidential support services.
The research shows the number of affected children in Scotland has remained relatively constant over the past 10 years in spite of improvements in prevention and treatment.
It’s an incredible honour and privilege to be acknowledged by the good people of the University of Edinburgh in this way.
Ms Lennox said: “It’s an incredible honour and privilege to be acknowledged by the good people of the University of Edinburgh in this way.
"In another incarnation I would have loved to have taken a degree in anthropology or psychology but, as a moderate renegade, my university has turned out to be the one of life.
"I hope this might inspire anyone who’s ever thought that they were “useless” not to necessarily draw that conclusion ... especially if they’re a woman over the age of forty five!”
Professor Viviene Cree who led the research project said: “There is a common perception that HIV is no longer a problem in Scotland - that it was a 1980s or 1990s issue.
"We need to find ways of opening up the subject of HIV - of talking about it for what it is - and then offering children and young people the support they need.
"We are delighted that Annie Lennox could come to Edinburgh today to share our message with others.”
Photo credit: Sandy Young - Scottishphotographer.com
This article was published on Oct 22, 2009