December 1, 2008

World AIDS Day Today

by Maggie Rosenbloom, Case Manager.

This December 1st marks the 20th anniversary of World AIDS day. Established by the World Health Organization in 1988, the day is meant to focus our attention on the global HIV/AIDS epidemic.

It is estimated that 1 in 20 people in DC are infected with HIV/AIDS. African-Americans account for 86% of people living with AIDS in DC. Women too are more disproportionately represented among HIV cases in DC; 93% of women diagnosed with HIV in DC were African-American.

There are a number of events going on in DC to raise awareness about HIV/AIDS:

DC Different Drummer World AIDS Day Concert
Hosted by DC Council Members Jim Graham and David Catania, a fundraiser with DCDD on 12/1/08 at 8 PM at the Harman Center, 610 F St. NW. The concert will benefit Whitman-Walker Clinic, Us Helping Us, and Metro Teen AIDS. The Concert will feature the Capitol Pride Symphonic Band under the direction of Joe Bello and DC Swing!, directed by Chris Raitzyk. DCDD Clarinet Quartet La Reeda Loca will perform prior to the concert at a VIP reception.

Candlelight Vigil With Whitman-Walker
Whitman-Walker Clinic will observe the 20th annual World AIDS Day with a new location for its annual candlelight vigil at Bethlehem Baptist Church at 2458 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave., SE, beginning at 5:30 pm on Monday, Dec. 1. Family and Medical Counseling Services will join Whitman-Walker as a partner in this year's vigil.

Demonstrate for Housing for People Living with AIDS in DC!
DC Fights Back will be organizing a demonstration today outside of the Union Station Metro.

Go Virtual: Attend the World AIDS Day Event in Second Life
Join Second Life for a World AIDS Day Musical Festival on November 30 and on December 1 for a World AIDS Day event that will feature HIV/AIDS presentations and displays, tours, writing workshops, and virtual red ribbons and t-shirts. For more information, visit the Second Life World AIDS Day page .

Get Tested!
Free confidential HIV testing will be available at the Elizabeth Taylor Medical Center, 1701 14th St., NW, from 9:00 am-7:30 pm; at the Max Robinson Center, 2301 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave., SE, from 9:00 am-7:30 pm; and at Whitman-Walker Clinic of Northern Virginia, 5232 Lee Highway in Arlington, from 9:00 am-5:00 pm.

You can also go to enter your zip code and be directed to nearby testing centers. There are close to 50 places that offer confidential HIV testing within a 10 mile radius of the Shaw area. Bread’s medical clinic offers the test to clients. Howard University Hospital, the Carl Vogel Center, the Max Robinson Center and Planned Parenthood are just a few of the organizations that offer HIV testing service in the DC area. Don’t forget to bring a friend.

For more information about organizations focused on HIV go to:
World AIDS Campaign
Fight HIV in DC
The World Health Organization

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