sassysage's Blog

Posts Tagged ‘HIV/AIDS

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  • Comments Off on Hot off the Press: be a soldier in the fight against HIV/AIDS

today is world aids day.   it’s been decades and there still is no cure.  millions of people are infected with HIV/AIDS and counting.  there have been some amazing advancements but this very preventable disease has not been stopped.  so what can you do?

1- get tested; a primary reason people are still becoming infected is because they are getting the virus from someone who does not know their hiv status.  to learn where to get tested visit www.aids.gov

2- make sure to talk to your loved ones about HIV/AIDS.  learn more about how someone can become infected and what the treatment options are.  if you know someone who has HIV, support them in their journey.

3- donate your time and efforts to the fight.  there are so many great organizations  who can use your energy and/or money.  organizations like the Young Women of Color Health Advocacy Coalition.  or it could be as simple as downloading music on your iphone.  apple is partnering with the (RED) campaign, so you can donate to HIV and AIDS treatment and prevention with Apple Pay transactions, iOS game purchases, and red accessories starting today.

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  • Comments Off on Sage’s Rage: Do yourself a favor get HIV tested today AND another day

Today is National HIV testing day and several communities are having events and special programs to get people tested.   I encourage anyone who is sexually active or has used needles that may not be clean to get tested.  But the thing I’ve heard the most when I speak to girls is they have already been tested, so ‘they’re good’.  NOT SO. 

The HIV test is not a vaccine.  You don’t take it and it cures you from ever getting the virus.   It’s important to know your HIV status not just for once upon a time but to know what your situation is now.  So go ahead and test today but mark your calendar for the next day you plan to get checked again.  

If you have never had an HIV test, it’s easy to find a place near you www.hivtest.org.  The test is simple and there are home tests you can get at your local pharmacy.  

some of you know i have been an advocate in the fight against hiv for over a decade.   my research and community work has focused on building awareness and preventing hiv among teens.  so imagine my shock and awe in hearing about a case where the hiv virus was the cure.  this is a must watch video…

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  • Comments Off on Hot Off The Press: Take Charge, Take The (HIV) Test Today

today, June 27th, is National HIV Testing Day.  the theme this year is

take charge, take the test.

i get asked all the time, ‘is HIV still an issue?’ and the answer is YES;

especially for young women of color.  

you can’t just sit around thinking you’re okay if you don’t know for sure what your status is.

if you took an HIV test a year ago but you have had unprotected sex, you don’t know for sure what has happened since you last took the test.

hiv testing 6-13

to find out where to get tested plug in a zip code here

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  • Comments Off on Hot off The Press: DEADLINE extended BET and APA youth advisory board- Applications Now Due June 21st

Consider applying to be  a part of the BET and APA youth advisory board (see below for information)

BETRap It up 10-17-11

BET Rap It Up Campaign  and American Psychological Association are working together to create a new HIV prevention campaign for youth.  We are looking for committed high school youth across the country to apply to be selected for the APA BET youth advisory board.

Applications for the APA BET youth advisory board are online at:
http://tinyurl.com/cahk7ja

The deadline has been extended to Friday June 21st.

For more information contact

Cherie D. Mitchell, MHS

Manager

Office on AIDS

Public Interest Directorate

American Psychological Association

750 First Street NE, Washington, DC 20002-4242

cmitchell@apa.org<mailto:cmitchell@apa.org>

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  • Comments Off on Sage’s Rage: Sisters Please Get HIV Tested

black aids awareness day

Today is National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day

sometimes i feel like a broken record

each year encouraging our communities to pay attention to HIV/AIDS

each year it seems to get harder to get folks to listen

each year the rates keep rising

for African Americans that is…

especially African American youth

please take the time to think about what you have been doing 

better yet think about what your partners could be doing

without your knowledge

get tested for hiv and other sexually transmitted infections

remember the tests do not prevent you from getting something

so you’ve gotta

abstain from sex

that mean NO to all types of sex

or

protect yourself by using condoms

make sure to learn how to use and dispose of one properly

 

if it sounds like i am preaching that’s because I AM!

we have to keep focused until the number of new infections

get down to ZERO

Today is World AIDS Day

What steps you are taking to fight the epidemic? I’ve got two for you:

1- Check out this virtual quilt commemorating the tireless work of those who are working to prevent HIV/AIDS worldwide.   Learn from others and share your stories.

http://www.bet.com/news/health/photos/2011/11/world-aids-day-virtual-quilt.html?ftcnt=HP_News#!112911-health-world-aids-day-quilt-13

2- Read the following commentary written by HIV/AIDS activist Denise Stokes.  It will leave you speechless but motivated to join the fight!

I Didn’t Know

World AIDS Day 2011 Reflections

By Denise Stokes

www.denisestokes.com

Some say that I have an impressive resume. I’ve lived with HIV for almost 30 years and spent more than half of my life fighting, marching, educating, and loving whoever I could reach. My portfolio is riddled with speeches and articles and photos… and I have loved living every step of my journey. But they have been hard years.

Yes, there has been love and laughter because I refuse to not embrace the amazing gift of life God grants me. At times I feel unstoppable – but I have to be honest with you; I am tired. AIDS is not a celebration. AIDS is a dark shadow that has settled over us and too many people still refuse to turn the light on. I am still fairly young but many of my friends are dead – one of them died today. He was a tireless soldier of love who, like so many advocates, spent his life reaching out to others in compassion. Now, we who are left will carry his passion along with our own and keep reaching people … until another of us falls silent.

We still die. Yes, we have amazing medicines. Yes, we have loving comrades who empower us for the fight. Yes, people being diagnosed with HIV can live long, full, amazing lives. But I risk your sensitivities to remind you that people still die from this disease; and we as educators and nurturers are deeply saddened when we see so many people continuing to become newly infected. At times I feel like an utter failure because I want to stop it; yet the numbers keep growing.

I am often asked what the worst part of living with HIV is. Stigma. Stigma is the most insidious side-effect of AIDS. The whispers when we choose to date, marry and have children – live. The look of judgment and the lightly veiled, “What did you do to get it”. Stigma keeps people silent with fear of being considered a pariah and scares otherwise proactive people away from testing centers. Stigma keeps driving the epidemic into the lives of family after family. And stigma, like HIV is 100% preventable.

I am full of hope and full of life. But like so many who have made ending the spread of HIV their life’s mission I count the numbers new HIV diagnosis and tremble inside. I still hear the stories of people being disowned and ostracized because of their HV status and the weight of the sadness is brutal. Then on World AIDS Day there is a brief kum-ba-yah and it’s over for many. But I will not sit idly by and watch the story of us be filed away 364 days of the year. I live with AIDS. Every day of life is World AIDS day for me – and for your cousin, your brother, your aunt, your grandmother, and your son… AIDS is not a day. It is a frightening state of apathy, indecision, mistaken choice, and fear that we can and must eradicate.

When I was infected at 13 I didn’t know HIV was out there. In those first years when I waited to die I did not know that I could and should fight for my life and medical care. When I took the first generation of pills we had to fight HIV, I did not know they would make me sick. I didn’t know how many times I would grab my black funeral suit to say goodbye to someone I loved. There was just so much I did not know. But I found out. I investigated and people reached out to help me to understand and to live.

But now that we have left you this legacy of love – now that we have paid with our lives to make sure that you now, what will you do?


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