Last Saturday night Carlos and I attended the AIDS Benefit Foundation of South Carolina's Dining with Friends Dessert Finale, which was held in a sky-box at the University of South Carolina's William Bryce Stadium.
It was a celebration of another successful Dining with Friends event, with cocktails and music, and desserts from some of South Carolina's best pastry chefs and chocolatiers.
There were booths set up to learn more about HIV/AIDS in the south, and specifically South Carolina, where HIV/AIDS is on the rise, especially in women.
One of the booths, run by a friends of Carlos', was the Keep the Promise booth. On July 22, 2012, there will be a “Keep the Promise” March and Rally to bring together thousands of AIDS advocates in the heart of Washington, DC prior to the opening of the 2012 International AIDS Conference. The aim of the rally and march is to remind world leaders and policy makers that the AIDS epidemic remains a global threat to public health. Without more resources for treatment, care, prevention and cost-effective interventions, progress achieved over the past 30 years of combating AIDS could be lost.
The “Keep the Promise” March seeks to refocus public attention on the lack of access to HIV testing, treatment and prevention--in December, in South Carolina, for example, there were less than 100 people on the AIDS Drug Assistance Program [ADAP] and yet by the 1st of March that number had risen to over 400.
While recent scientific discoveries show that treatment as prevention has the potential to one day end the AIDS epidemic, political will and financial resources must go hand-in-hand with science to make this vision a reality.
Carlos and I are trying to attend the march. There are programs to help people pay for, or at least defray, the cost of the trip to DC, as well as offering room and borad for two nights.
If you'd like more information, or would like to attend, please go to Keep The Promise 2012.