Ann Louise Copeland, cofounder and Executive Director of Women At Risk, died February 11, 1996 from long term complications of AIDS.
In 1991, Ann Cofounded Women At Risk with a group of HIV+ women who were frustrated at the lack of services geared to their needs.
Ann was an incredible woman, activist, advocate and friend to many women living with AIDS. Ann spent many hours assisting newly diagnosed women, forming support groups, taking women to appointments, and making a difference in this world.
She participated in many conferences including the international AIDS conference in Amsterdam and has spoken to women from all over the world. In 1995, Ann received the Woman of the Year Award from the California 53rd State Assembly District.
Ann made living in the world a better place for all of us. She wanted us to remember all those infected and affected by HIV, and to assist them however possible. Her dream was and still is today, that as long as there is no cure for HIV/AIDS that Women At Risk continues to be a safe haven for women.
Women At Risk is dedicated to assisting those affected by HIV and to inform the public and those who provide services to persons with AIDS that women have unique needs.
Women At Risk, has support groups, one-on-one peer counseling, workshops, a speakers bureau, and distributes educational information about the disease. WAR provides women the opportunity to share information and express their concerns in a safe, supportive setting. By empowering themselves they are able to make the best possible choices about their physical and psychological health.
The following poem was printed on Annie's memorial program.
Somewhere I heard that one voice couldn't make a difference. I spoke anyway.
Someone told me that no one would agree with what I had to say. I said what I had to say anyway. In a faint, clear voice, I spoke anyway.
Someone taught me that the truth was a secret to be held inside. I spoke what I knew to be the truth anyway.
Someone told me no one would care. I spoke anyway.
Somewhere I learned that people might lash out in anger, pain, fear and misunderstanding when I spoke what I knew to be the truth. And, in a strong, clear voice, I spoke anyway. Each time I spoke my voice grew stronger and more gentle.
Somehow I learned that one voice primes the pump of another. And that voice brings fresh water to the surface.
And then one day--in the distance--I could hear one voice speaking the truth. A faint clear voice growing stronger and becoming more gentle as I listened.
And One Voice joins One Voice joins One Voice joins another.
Donations can be made directly to
Women At Risk, 5183 Overland Ave. #B,
Culver City, CA 90230