Florida: Vivica Fox Throws Star Power Behind HIV/AIDS Awareness
September 23, 2010
More than 200 people attended the second annual Blackout HIV/AIDS awareness event at Club BED in South Beach, which featured an appearance by movie star Vivica A. Fox.
Attendees received gift bags containing condoms and educational pamphlets, while a projector flashed HIV/AIDS statistics overhead. Some of the event's proceeds benefitted Empower U Miami Inc., a minority-owned, peer-based organization founded by and for people living with HIV/AIDS. Organizer Karen "KD" Douglas, of KD Music Management & Marketing, said Empower U provides housing, support groups, free testing, therapy, and other services.
"The purpose of the event is to bring awareness of the AIDS epidemic that is affecting our communities," said Douglas. "Although this is a worldwide issue, we must first start here by educating people through any means necessary and then work to expand our efforts abroad. Events like these provide an opportunity to gain the attention of those who may not necessarily feel comfortable addressing the issue in another manner."
Fox mingled with attendees and took photographs with them. She discussed her experience making the independent film "Cover." The movie, directed by Bill Dukes, addresses HIV/AIDS, bisexuality, and social issues affecting the black community.
"I have been in the fashion and film industry for years and have lost a lot of friends to HIV/AIDS. I still have friends who are HIV-positive and have been surviving for years," said Fox. "We need to let people know that the disease is still alive because, for a long time, people thought that HIV and AIDS was a gay man's disease. But new cases are reported every year about African-American women who are being infected by their partners, men who they think they are in a heterosexual relationship with, who are living hidden lives."
South Florida Times (Ft. Lauderdale)
09.17.2010; Brandyss Howard
This article was provided by U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update. Visit the CDC's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.
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