I cannot believe it is already December 1! I am sooooo not ready for Christmas and even though I have another solid 3 weeks I am still concerned…
Anyways, back to another topic on my mind today: World AIDS Day.
This is the 20th Anniversary of World AIDS Day. Can you believe that it has been 30 or so years since AIDS was first discovered?!
Talk about an unpopular, controversial disease. If you've known me for more than a few years then you'll know that I used work as an analyst for the Ryan White CARE Act Program in Southern California. During my time there I really learned alot about AIDS and HIV and the people that it affects. And I met alot of people and heard their stories. I helped write grants to get assistance to those people so they could live another day.
Contrary to what many people believe, everyone who gets AIDS wasn't “asking for it”. Some people who get AIDS are babies who get it from their mother. Or from their father when they are conceived. Some affected by AIDS are women who have been 100% faithful to their husbands, the only man they have ever “loved”, only to have his infidelity infect them with AIDS. Some are people who make bad choices that get them infected, be it drugs or risky sexual behavior. Some people still don't even know how one gets AIDS therefore they do not protect themselves. Who is getting AIDS now?
And that is just people here in the United States. In Africa AIDS is a huge problem! I cannot even begin to explain the havoc this disease had wreaked on the population in Africa.
AIDS is like the taboo disease. It touches many many people. It isn't just a “druggie” disease. It isn't just a disease homosexuals get. It doesn't only affect promiscuous people either.
As a scrapbooker I see many many many events focused at raising awareness and funds for breast cancer. Yeah, breast cancer does affect women. But aren't there many many other causes we could raise awareness about? Aren't there some other things that deserve our attention and our funds?
HIV/AIDS can be prevented. IT CAN!!! We can battle it! So why doesn't anyone want to talk about it?
I have contemplated doing a charity crop for and HIV/AIDS nonprofit but haven't. Why not? Because as soon as I bring up the topic, people wrinkle their noses and change the subject if they care to continue the conversation at all. It is sad.
So while it is World AIDS Day, please take a moment to take advantage of all of the information there is out there on the internet about HIV/AIDS and educate yourself. You never know when it could affect you. You need to let your children know about it, how to protect themselves, what are the consequences. You need to let your family and friends know, specially if they engage in risky behavior, so they can take precautions to protect themselves.
Here are some links you can use to get more information about AIDS:
US Department of Health and Human Services
World AIDS Day
World AIDS Campaign
Center for Disease Control (CDC)
And if you are seriously interested in helping fight this disease, please leave a comment here to let me know.
And check out a local nonprofit that offers services to those affected by HIV/AIDS such as these:
Central City Lutheran Mission
Inland AIDS Project
Desert AIDS Project
AIDS Project Los Angeles (APLA)
San Diego Black HIV/AIDS Project
They welcome your funds and always are looking for volunteers.
Check out retailers who support Product Red, such as Starbuck's.
That's all for now folks!
2 thoughts on “Monday Monday.”
I agree with you… I lived in South Africa for 5 years and HIV and AIDS is rife… the figures say 1 in 5 people have it… which means if you are in a room of 15?? I think we are all still so scared of this disease that the taboo will be hard to overcome…
It’s such a shame that there are so many bad connotations associated with this disease! We need to stop being scared and squeemish and start educating ourselves and those we care about!