This Sunday marked the kick-off to World Aids Day efforts around the city, state, and country --- and as always --- I AM My Sister's Keeper was blessed with the opportunity to come alongside the efforts of several churches around town.
Our Adolescent Peer Educators were on hand to share stories and educate everyone about HIV/AIDS prevention and sexual health. Our Adult Counselors were on hand to provide HIV/AIDS testing and counseling. And for those that wanted to honor our fallen, we were able to provide balloons and helium tanks for ballon releases.
I would like to say 2 special thank you's --- the first of which is to Pastor and First Lady Estes of Compassion Word Ministries, who as a part of their commitment to the youth, aligned their World Aids Day Efforts with their Youth Sunday --- making it as easy as possible for their young people to gain much needed knowledge and understanding about HIV/AIDS and their sexual health. And as an added bonus, I was able to break bread with 5 of the young men in attendance who made the decision to give their lives to GOD.
The other special thanks is to Pastor and First Lady Ledbetter of Mt. Pisgah Missionary Baptist Church. Thank you for your commitment to the community and your willingness to lead from the front.
(featured in the slideshow below) this power couple, particularly First Lady LaToyia, was the youngest to participate in the Walgreens First Ladies Health Initiative that took place back in late September. Of the many health concerns that the initiative addressed, First Lady LaToyia thought that HIV/AIDS was important enough for her to go affront their entire congregation and be tested. The response was so overwhelming, that the testers ran out of test kits by the end of the 1ST of the 4 hours scheduled.
With World Aids Day arriving just two months later, the committed couple went back to the pulpit to make sure that those who wanted to get tested still had the opportunity.
As a community collaborative to eradicate HIV/AIDS among African American Women and Girls, I know I speak for the entire I AM My Sister's Keeper Network when I say that we are encouraged and inspired by those whose actions say out loud --- "I AM My Sister's Keeper."
CLICK HERE to see all of the images from this event.