About AIDS

Saturday is Black AIDS Awareness Day

The fourth annual observance of National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness & Information Day will be this Saturday, Feb. 7. This awareness initiative is designed to mobilize African-Americans across the United States to get tested, get educated, and get involved with HIV/AIDS in their communities. Saturday is a day when the black community is challenged – and supported – to do something about the devastating problem of HIV in its midst.

The event was co-founded by five national organizations led by the National Black Leadership Commission on AIDS and commonly referred to as the Community Capacity Building Coalition. Together, these organizations provide assistance to community-based organizations serving African-American communities in helping them promote local prevention education and interventions.

In Austin, HIV is striking African-Americans at about three times their representation in the general population. In order to bring that under control, people must become aware of the problem and educate themselves about the issues. Only then can we see hope of a meaningful reformulation of community norms for safer behaviors and a reduction in HIV infection rates.

Huston-Tillotson College and AIDS Services of Austin have been putting on a series of awareness events all week, leading up to Saturday's observance. On Saturday, there will be a health fair at the college for the whole community, with a focus on HIV/AIDS and our local resources available for prevention, testing, and treatment.

Drop by the festivities at HTC and get the scoop – then tell your friends, family, and neighbors. If the community works together at this, change can happen!

Sandy Bartlett

Community Education Coordinator, AIDS Services of Austin

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