Hampton Roads Observes 30th Annual World AIDS Day

AIDS Walk and Performing Arts Benefit Planned

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Participants in the 2017 AIDS Walk Hampton Roads march through Norfolk. (Source: Eric Hause)

December 1 marks the 30th anniversary of World AIDS Day and while significant progress has been made in fighting the disease since 1988, a recent United Nations report shows that three in four people living with HIV do not know their status or are aware of care and prevention services available locally.

This year’s theme for World AIDS Day, is  “Know Your Status” and area Hampton Roads non-profit groups are hosting events to raise awareness among the public that HIV remains a significant public health issue, how to get tested and prevention.

AIDS Walk Hampton Roads

On Saturday, December 1, AIDS Walk Hampton Roads will take place at 10:30 a.m.  beginning at EVMS’s Smith Rogers Hall located at 358 Mowbray Arch in Norfolk and ending at 700 E. Olney Rd. at the Vivian C. Mason Cultural Arts Center.  Shuttle services back to your car will be provided.  Individuals are encouraged to bring poster board size signs with positive messaging about HIV awareness.

AIDS Walk Hampton Roads is in partnership with:

13th Annual Arts for Life Benefit

The Benjack Studio Theatre at TRDance Center in downtown Norfolk will host the 13th Annual Arts For Life on Monday, December 3rd at 7:00pm to benefit those living with HIV/AIDS in Hampton Roads.  

December 1 marks the annual observance of World AIDS Day—a day of remembrance, a day to raise awareness, a day to sound the alarm about the continuing spread of this disease. Since 2006 leading arts organizations throughout Hampton Roads have joined forces to celebrate Arts For Life, an evening of dance, theater and song to benefitLGBT Life Center in Hampton Roads and the over 8,000 people living locally with HIV.

“It is our responsibility as artists, as individuals, to lend our talents and support to benefit those organizations helping to ease the struggle caused by this worldwide epidemic,” said Ricardo Melendez, Artistic Director for Virginia Ballet Theater and Artistic Producer of “Arts For Life.” 

“I believe that charity begins at home. HIV/AIDS is affecting all sectors of our community, including our youth. So we have gathered local artists and offered our talents to benefit those locally affected.” said Melendez.   

From its inception, “Arts For Life” has brought together internationally recognized local artists like Narissa Bond, Julie Clark, Brian Nedvin, interpreter Mindy Brown and Hampton Roads leading arts organizations groups like Todd Rosenlieb Dance, Virginia Ballet Theater, Virginia Stage Company, Actor’s Workshop of Virginia and The Governor’s School for the Arts, amongst others, in a benefit concert that raises awareness and grants support to LGBT Life Center.

Each year, local visual artists and businesses donate their work and services for a silent auction and raffle along with a reception sponsored by Gershwin’s on Granby Street.  All proceeds from box office, raffle tickets, and silent auction go to the LGBT Life Center.

Ticket prices range from $15 (students) to $25 and may be purchased at the event website HERE.

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