Dear Friends and Family,
I am raising funds for the National AIDS Memorial team this year at AIDS Walk San Francisco on Sunday July 19th, 2020. Since 1987, AIDS Walk San Francisco has raised over $90 million for HIV/AIDS organizations in the Bay Area, making it the largest HIV/AIDS fundraising event in northern California!
The National AIDS Memorial is a 10-acre national memorial in Golden Gate Park near the California Academy of Sciences dedicated to all lives touched by AIDS. It is the only HIV/AIDS national memorial passed by the US congress. In 2019 the National AIDS Memorial working with the Names Project in Atlanta brought the Quilt back to its home in the San Francisco Bay Area. The National AIDS Memorial is shepherding the Grove and the Quilt.
Since the beginning of the global pandemic 32 million people have died and 37.9 million people currently live with HIV/AIDS. 50% are women. Only 24.5 million people are accessing antiretroviral therapy. In 2018 1.7 million people became newly infected with HIV.
In 2018, 770,000 people died from AIDS-related illnesses worldwide. In the USA 675,000 have died since the beginning of HIV/AIDS. It is estimated there are currently 1.1 million Americans living with HIV/AIDS and over 150,000 do not know they have the disease. In San Francisco since the beginning of the epidemic approximately 20,000 people have died.
HIV cases are increasing in the southern US and in rural areas. In 2018, African Americans accounted for 12% of the US population but 43% (476,000) of people living with HIV/AIDS.
I am honored to be the Co-Chair of the National AIDS Memorial Board of Directors. My involvement with this organization is deeply rewarding. For over a quarter century the National AIDS Memorial has helped to tell the story of AIDS to future generations ensuring we will NEVER again repeat the same mistakes. As a board member, a majority of the funds I raise through AIDS Walk this year will directly benefit the National AIDS Memorial, and the rest will benefit other worthy HIV/AIDS organizations. Although a national memorial, the Memorial receives no government funding. AIDS Walk provides a simple way to raise much-needed funding for the Grove and other beneficiary organizations, while sending a signal of support in the ongoing fight against HIV/AIDS.
I am asking you to help me reach my fundraising goal of $45,000. Your support will not only benefit the National AIDS Memorial, but will also mean so much to me personally. Any amount helps! On behalf of the National AIDS Memorial and thousands of Bay Area individuals living with HIV/AIDS, I thank you for your support!
If you would like to join me on the virtual AIDS Walk please let me know. Thanks again for your support!
Board Co- Chair, National AIDS Memorial