HIV is not only a gay disease, it is a HUMAN disease and it is GLOBAL pandemic, and your stories whether in writing or on video not only help to take away the stigma surrounding HIV/AIDS, they remind us that HIV/AIDS is still exists. Your courageous stories I have read or heard over the past year have been powerfully uplifting, inspirational, informational, and empowering. Your stories at times have moved me to tears, have made me laugh, and have called me to action and given purpose to keep going. I chose not to give in to HIV and Hepatitis C, but to rise up above it; and a countless number of your stories from across the World helped me do just that.
I learned of my HIV status on March 3rd 2010, and a month later with follow up labs was told that I had also contracted Hepatitis C (non IV drug user). To cope I sought the help of psychologists, and psychiatrists, friends, and family. Unless your are living with HIV it is hard for people to relate fully to what you are going through.
What has really gotten me through the year is hearing your stories via video on YouTube and other websites and reading numerous blog entries of YOUR experiences, YOUR strength, and YOUR hope living with HIV/AIDS.
Over the past couple months I have reached out to many people and asked them if they would share their story. I've been met with an overwhelming response to those who wish to share their story living with HIV/AIDS. For many telling ones story can be very therapeutic and liberating. Telling your story to someone newly diagnosed is invaluable. I thank you in advance for your stories, for your courage and deciding to take a stand and rise up to HIV. I look forward to corresponding with folks from all over the World.
For those who wish to tell their story via video who do not have video capabilities I have bought an inexpensive yet viable FLIP video camera that I can mail anywhere in the World, excluding the Countries below. While many from these Countries may want to tell their story I will not facilitate your persecution by sending you a camera to record your story. However, if you want to break your silence in one of these countries feel free to e-mail me your video or story, and we can discuss disclosure options.
Via writing or video your story will be posted on my blog at www.riseuptohiv.blogspot.com. If via video it will be posted to www.youtube.com/RiseUpToHIV.
It will be promoted through my personal Facebook page located at www.facebook.com/riseuptohiv and further through my Facebook fan page RiseUpToHIV. AND on Twitter.
If writing your story, it must be at minimum 500 words, and include 3-5 pictures depending on the length of your writing. If telling your story via video it please keep it 10 minutes or under. I am seeking stories from across the gamut, from all over the World to include Men and Women, straight and gay, young and old.
If you are the founder/CEO of a grassroots organization and making a difference in your community or any other extraordinary individual making a positive impact in your community with regard to HIV/AIDS then I also welcome a video or writing submissions from you.
What to Talk About?
There is really no format, but as a guideline talk about your experiences, your strength and your hope living with HIV, and see below further talking points if you need some guidance.
Some Possible Talking Points
- Start with your name, your diagnosis date, where you are from.
- Why are you making this video or writing out your story?
- Talk about your life pre-diagnosis up to your diagnosis date.
- Talk about the day you found out you were positive.
- What direction did your life take when you found out you were positive?
- How you told your friends and family.
- Talk about the meds you take.
- Talk about your hopes and dreams for the future.
- What would you tell someone newly diagnosed?
- What positive messages have your heard.
- Cry, Laugh, Sing, Smile, talk from the heart.
How to Submit
E-mail your video or writing submission to firstname.lastname@example.org If requesting the Flip Cam, please e-mail me your address.
Once your video goes live I can delete it from my websites, but I cannot control who may copy or share it. So, essentially once submitted your story may be on the internet forever, and be able to be viewed by anyone. By submitting your story or video you understand this and release me of any liability.
While we know that HIV is a HUMAN disease, it is my responsibility to point out where homosexuality is illegal and where disclosing your HIV status, may also carry legal consequences.
Know Your Rights Regarding Homosexuality and HIV in Your Country
- Video Editor
- Graphic Artist
- Proof Reader
If you would like to partner with me, or become a sponsor on this project please e-mail me at email@example.com.
This project is brought to you by Kevin Maloney, founder and CEO of RiseUpToHIV.
"Voices in unity strengthening community." -- KM
My video introduction to the project.
Send Kevin an e-mail.