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Get Involved: World AIDS Day

Thirty years ago, in 1988, the World Health Organization established World AIDS Day on December 1st to raise awareness of HIV and AIDS and fight the epidemic. One simple way you can support World Aids Day is to wear red ribbons to show commitment to the fight against HIV, to show support for those living with HIV and AIDS, and to remember the more than 35 million people who have died of the illness.
Get Involved: World AIDS Day

by Katherine Durgin-Bruce

November 29, 2018

For 2018, the World AIDS Day campaign slogan is “Know Your Status.” There are still many barriers to testing, including stigma and discrimination, financial barriers, and privacy concerns. This year’s campaign is intended to decrease the stigma of testing and encourage everyone to “know your status.” Research from UNAIDS indicates that more than 9 million people living with HIV do not know their status. Testing empowers people to protect their loved ones against HIV and to receive early treatment. UNAIDS has set global 90-90-90 goals for 2020. By 2020, they aim to have 90% of people know their HIV status, 90% of people living with HIV receiving sustained treatment, and 90% of people achieving viral suppression through treatment.

Wondering what more you can do to support the AIDS community? Start with these resources, then check out our interview with Elena Ivanova, an activist educating and advocating for HIV-positive people in Russia.



How to Survive a Plague: The Story of How Activists and Scientists Tamed AIDS by David France
The Pox Lover: An Activist's Decade in New York and Paris by Anne-Christine d’Adesky  


We Test, with advice on testing, staying safe, and ending HIV
UNAIDS site about this year’s campaign for World AIDS Day
+ UNAIDS resources and statistics
+ UK’s World AIDS Day coverage and campaign


World AIDS Day Message from UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibe and more wonderful videos about UNAIDS’ work around the world
+ PBS News Hour’s The End of AIDS: Far From Over, A Series on the Epidemic in Russian, Nigeria, and Florida
+ 360HIV video from UNAIDS about living with the illness in different countries
+ Takalani Sesame Taking on a fearsome epidemic with a feisty Muppet who’s HIV positive.


New York State Department of Health’s resources for grades K-12 
+ Rights, Respect, Responsibility: A K-12 Sexuality Education Curriculum from Advocates for Youth


In NYC, get involved with Housing Works to help people affected by HIV and homelessness in 3 ways:
1. Volunteer
2. Donate items to their bookstores and thrift shops
3. Set up a refashionNYC program in your apartment building or workplace to collect clothing donations

+ Also in NYC, check out volunteer opportunities with GMHC
+ Find ways to get involved with the (RED) campaign to fight HIV/AIDs globally
+ Check out POZ’s explanation of how you can best help HIV/AIDS organizations in your community.


Illustration by Benjamin Tuttle / Ultravirgo

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