World AIDS Day 2011
It is difficult for me to comprehend that AIDS has been around for 30 years. I can recall the early days of the epidemic, when my aunt was a nurse on the AIDS ward when no one else wanted to help "those people." I remember her stories of people bleeding out and the doctors being clueless about what to do other than make them comfortable. Over the past 30 years we have come so very far....but AIDS continues to be an epidemic in Africa. In the United States African-American women make up 12% of the female population and 66% of the new HIV/AIDS cases.
I spent a large portion of my professional life working on the fight against AIDS both domestically and abroad. I've lost friends to this disease and also experience joy for my friends that not only continue to live with it but fight everyday to ensure that people are aware that it has not gone away but there are things that we all can do to prevent it.
In 1993 I had the opportunity to see the original AIDS quilt laid out on the mall in Washington, DC. It was truly one of the most moving moments of my life. Each quilt represented a life lost to AIDS. I get teary just thinking about it. Things have changed now and HIV is no longer a death sentence but most importantly we can end maternal to child transmission by the year 2015! One has partnered with (RED) to encourage us all to make panels for a virtual quilt and pledge to fight and have a generation AIDS free by 2015! My panel is above and you can see it in the actual virtual quilt HERE.
I am happy to be a One Mom ambassador and spread the word about this exciting movement. Make your panel today and pledge to join ONE in the fight against poverty and disease. I'm sure you are aware of the (RED) movement and I implore you this holiday season to purchase at least one product so that money can go to the fight against AIDS. You can pledge by creating a panel for the (2015) Quilt. A virtual quilt made of panels by folks like you and me and a ton of famous people too!
Let's end maternal to child transmission by 2015! We can do this!