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California: Billboards Push AIDS/HIV Awareness

August 19, 2005

The 10 HIV/AIDS prevention billboards located around southwest and southeast Fresno have a straightforward message: "Know the facts. Protect Yourself. Get Tested." The billboards, which went up last week, are the first created locally to raise awareness about the disease.

Gary Dennis, executive director of the California HIV/AIDS Advocacy Network Grassroots Evolution (CHAANGE) of the San Joaquin Valley, said he first approached Fresno City Councilmember Cynthia Sterling about funding for the billboards last year. Though Sterling supported the idea, her discretionary funds had been spent. This year, however, Sterling was able to arrange a $2,000 contribution for five billboards in her district. Private donations and a matching amount from Vista Media Group Inc. provided for another five billboards.

The simple design of the billboards includes the prevention slogan and the CHAANGE telephone number, 559-268-1969, and Web site, "It's simple and easy to read -- that's what we try to usually go for," said Larry Loucks, an account executive with Vista.

"Anything that will raise awareness and get people to start thinking about past behaviors that may have placed them at risk of HIV transmission and make them seek testing and come in for testing is wonderful," said Jena Adams, supervising communicable disease specialist at the Fresno County Community Health Department.

Back to other news for August 19, 2005

Adapted from:
Fresno Bee
08.17.2005; Barbara Anderson

This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.
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