Sunday, August 27, marks the first National Faith HIV/AIDS Awareness Day (NFHAAD). Faith-based groups and religious leaders across the country will be working together to engage their communities in the fight against the epidemic.
Spearheaded by HIV-negative ally Khadijah Abdullah and her nonprofit organization, RAHMA (Reaching All HIV-positive Muslims in America), the event hopes to unite Muslim, Christian, Jewish, Buddhist, Sikh, Hindu and Baha’i representatives to work for HIV education, prevention and treatment.
A video on NFHAAD’s website, FaithAIDSDay.com, introduces the faith ambassadors participating in the awareness day:
According to an NFHAAD press release, the awareness day includes events across the country (you can read about many of them on the event’s Facebook page). The highlights are an interfaith prayer at the White House in Washington, DC, and a Prayer Walk to Freedom Plaza. The press release states:
We chose the White House as our starting point for NFHAAD to show unity in the face of this Administration’s troubling anti-HIV policies. As people of faith, one of our core tenets is to care for the sick and provide ways to foster good health and strengthen well-being.
This obligation is more important now than ever as 40 percent of people living with HIV rely on Medicaid for their treatment and care. The persistent attempts by this Administration to repeal the Affordable Care Act coupled with the proposed budget cuts to Medicaid and welfare programs for the poor will significantly impact people living with HIV.
For a recent POZ profile on Abdullah, read “Fighting With Mercy.”