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November 27, 2023

World AIDS Day Commemoration 2023

Media Contacts:
Irwin Rappaport
irwin@aidsmonument.org
323.620.5270
 
Craig Bowers
Chief Marketing and External Affairs Officer
213.201.1475
cbowers@aplahealth.org

11.27.2023

World AIDS Day will be commemorated in West Hollywood Park with a food & drinks reception, a candlelight procession, and a free screening of the AIDS documentary COMMITMENT TO LIFE.

Hosted by APLA Health and the Foundation for The AIDS Monument and co-sponsored by the City of West Hollywood, the event will begin at 5:30 p.m. on Friday, December 1 with a reception on the top-floor Respite Deck of the Aquatics & Recreation Center located in West Hollywood Park (647 N. San Vicente Blvd., West Hollywood 90069).

After a short program, gathered community members will descend the Grand Staircase in a candlelight procession and walk Northwest through the Park to Robertson Blvd., East on Santa Monica Blvd., South on San Vicente Blvd., past the future home of STORIES: The AIDS Monument, and ending at West Hollywood City Council Chambers.

In Council Chambers, the evening will continue with a free screening of the award-winning 2023 documentary COMMITMENT TO LIFE, which will begin promptly at 7:15 p.m. in West Hollywood City Council Chambers. COMMITMENT TO LIFE documents the true story of the fight against HIV/AIDS in Los Angeles and how an intrepid group of people living with HIV/AIDS, doctors, movie stars, studio moguls and activists changed the course of the epidemic.

At this event, speakers will include LA County Supervisor Lindsey P. Horvath, members of the West Hollywood City Council, and Brenda Freiberg, an HIV/AIDS awareness advocate who lost both of her sons to AIDS. The World AIDS Day commemorative event is co-sponsored by the City of West Hollywood, APLA Health, and the Foundation for The AIDS Monument (STORIES: The AIDS Monument).

The first World AIDS Day took place in 1988, providing a platform to raise awareness about HIV and AIDS and honor the lives affected by the epidemic. This year's theme is “World AIDS Day 35: Remember and Commit.” World AIDS Day serves as an annual reminder of the global struggle to end HIV-related stigma, an opportunity to honor those we have lost, and a rallying cry to commit to working toward a day when HIV is no longer a public health threat.

Here are additional details for the event:

  • The reception area on the Respite Deck will open at 5:30 p.m.
  • The candlelight procession will begin at about 6:30 p.m. at the top of the Grand Staircase.
  • Doors for the film screening in Council Chambers will open at 7:00 p.m.

This event is free, but registration is required. For more information and to register for this event, please go to: https://WADinWeHo.eventbrite.com.

Community members with questions about this event, including ADA accessibility, may contact Karen Eyres at karen.eyres@aidsmonument.org.

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The Foundation for The AIDS Monument (FAM) is building STORIES: The AIDS Monument in West Hollywood Park. The Monument will honor those we lost to HIV/AIDS, celebrate the survivors, caregivers, activists and community leaders, and educate younger and future generations about the disease. The Monument was designed by Daniel Tobin of UAP and is being built in partnership with the City of West Hollywood which donated the land for the Monument and is providing significant funding. For more information about FAM, please visit https://aidsmonument.org/

APLA Health restores dignity and trust within underserved communities by providing world-class LGBTQ+ empowering healthcare, HIV specialty care, food, housing, and other essential support services. Since 1983, APLA Health has remained steadfast in its commitment to ending the HIV/AIDS epidemic in our lifetime. The agency, a multi-site operation, includes seven Federally Qualified health Center (FQHC) locations serving more than 18,000 people annually in Los Angeles County, the nation’s most populous. We provide 20 different services including: medical, dental, and behavioral healthcare; HIV specialty care; Sexual Health Services & Community Resources. For people living with HIV, we offer housing support services through the Alliance for Housing & Healing; benefits counseling; home healthcare; and the Vance North Necessities of Life Program food pantry program. Additionally, we are leaders in advocating for policy and legislation that positively impact the LGBTQ+ and HIV communities we serve. For more information on APLA Health please visit https://aplahealth.org/

The City of West Hollywood was one of the first government entities to provide social services grants to local AIDS and HIV organizations. The onset of the HIV/AIDS epidemic had a significant impact on the City, with the disease’s elevated infection rate among gay male residents causing a devastatingly high number of deaths. The City sponsored one of the first AIDS awareness campaigns in the country in October 1985 and the City’s response to the AIDS crisis has been recognized as a model for other cities, nationally and globally. The City of West Hollywood’s HIV Zero Strategic Plan embraces a vision to “Get to Zero” on infections, progression of HIV to AIDS, discrimination, and stigma. For more information about the City, please visit https://www.weho.org/

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