World AIDS Day is upon us once again. This Tuesday will mark the 23rd year of its observance. For the last ten years I’ve traveled with Gwenn to educate about HIV/AIDS- this is by far the busiest time of the year for us.
So, I’m going out to talk about how HIV has impacted my life and dispel some of the myths about the virus, such as “you can tell by looking at someone that they have HIV”, as well as the importance of safe sex and the effectiveness of proper condom usage. You may be wondering what you can do to observe World AIDS Day this year...
The most simple way to be involved is cyberly. Add a red ribbon to your profile image on Facebook or wherever you choose to do your social networking. On Facebook, you can add a ribbon to your profile picture quite effortlessly by going here. Be sure to write a status update explaining why there’s a ribbon on your pic- don’t assume others know that Tuesday is World AIDS Day just because you do! Do what you can to spread the word, because I’m kind of afraid that Tiger Woods is going to get an X-ray on Tuesday, thus erasing all coverage of HIV/AIDS on the news.
Recently I reconnected with Georgia Arnold of MTV’s Staying Alive Foundation. Way back when in 2000, Gwenn and I appeared on MTV’s educational program on World AIDS Day, which you can see here. (Gwenn and I appear at the 16:15 mark.) You can witness our only picnic on the mountain, plus I sing a song and get blood drawn... not sure which is tougher to watch!
Get the song on iTunes on World AIDS Day. Hear a preview of the track below.
Fellow Charlottesvillians looking for something to get into? Though I won’t be in town to partake, the AIDS Services Group and their partners are offering several ways to support the cause this year:
Tuesday, December 1st
Candlelight Vigil, 5 - 6 pm, ALC Copies, corner of Barracks Rd. and Emmet, St.
Wednesday, December 2nd
Dinner at X Lounge, 5:30 - 11:00 pm, 10% of food revenue will be donated to ASG
Thursday, December 3rd
ASG Open House, 5 - 7 pm, ASG office, 963 2nd St. SE.
Friday, December 4th
Free Confidential Testing, 3 - 7 pm, Thomas Jefferson Memorial Church, 717 Rugby Rd.
Saturday, December 5th
AIDS Walk, 9 - 11 am, Westminster Presbyterian Church, 190 Rugby Rd.
Sunday, December 6th
Return of the Drag Queens, 7 - 11 pm, club 216, 609 E. Market St.
For more information about any of these events
please contact Chris Radice at 434.979.7714 x 251
Looking for something closer to you to get into? Check with your local AIDS Service Organization. Either way, it’s very important that we continue to discuss HIV/AIDS and do our best to acknowledge the impact this virus has had on our planet, and prevent further suffering and ignorance of it as well.
PS... I’ll be tweeting my World AIDS Week travels, so go here for micro-updates.
Shawn on: Shawn’s book Decker’s Daily Coffee
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