Los Angeles, October 20, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) – Today AIDS Walk Los Angeles has held its 35th annual walk which has raised vital funds that help build support and awareness of the continuing need to address the HIV / AIDS epidemic. Ten thousand participants, volunteers and sponsors raised nearly $ 1.6 million. Individuals can increase this amount by donating before November 15, 2019.
This year's AIDS Walk Los Angeles was the first to be internally managed by APLA Health, which has been the beneficiary of the walk since its inception. The theme for 2019 is "AIDS has met its march," which calls on participants to continue the struggle in their efforts to make history of AIDS.
“Between our first AIDS Walk in 1985 and today, we have seen a lot of progress in the fight against HIV and AIDS. Right now, we have the real possibility of reducing the number of new infections because of features like PrEP and educational tools like U = U, ”said Craig E. Thompson, CEO of APLA Health. “AIDS Walk LA continues to push HIV and AIDS forward and raise awareness about their effects on Los Angeles County communities – the second largest epidemic in the United States. AIDS Walk also helps raise vital funds that keep people living with HIV in support programs and extend the reach of our prevention programs.
We know that health care and education will help stop this disease. "
Elected officials, famous guests and VIPs included US Representative Maxine Waters, State Senate Majority Leader Bob Hertzberg, State Senator Maria Elena Durazo, State Senator Anthony Portantino, State Assembly Member Mike Gipson, Assembly Member Mike Gipson, California Assembly Member Adrin Nazarian, Los Angeles City Council Member Paul Krekorian, Los Angeles City Controller Ron Galperin, Los Angeles City Public Works Council Chairman Kevin James, Mayor of West Hollywood John D. Amico, West Hollywood Mayor Pro Tempore Lindsey Horvath, Jai Rodriguez, Queer Eye for Straight / Q Channel; Dales Soules, Orange is the new black; Garrett Clayton, beach movie for teens; Zoe Perry, young Sheldon; Lesley-Ann Brandt, Lucifer; Jake Borelli and Alex Blue Davis, Grey's Anatomy; Zuri Adele, Tommy Martinez, Josh Pence and Emma Hunton, Good Trouble; Jake Choi, single parents; Ellen Leyva and Karl Schmid, ABC7; Mikalah Gordon, Channel Q Radio; and Frenchie Davis, American performer and Broadway singer.
Following the VIP event, the walkers gathered at the Los Angeles City Hall for a warm-up led by GROOV3, a Los Angeles-based dance exercise company. The opening ceremony was attended by guest speakers, including Jai Rodriguez, Queer Eye for straight men and Channel Q, followed by Kai Smith, coordinator of APLA Health's HIV prevention program and Carlos Aguas-Pinzon, APLA Health patients.
"At APLA Health, we know that healthcare and education are the best tools we have to stop the more than 1,600 new HIV infections in the year in Los Angeles," said Smith.
“We can end the HIV epidemic here by providing people with the resources and tools they need to stay protected from contracting the virus. One way is APLA Health's free, non-judgmental HIV testing and access to Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) – sometimes for almost no cost – to prevent the spread of the virus. "
“Infections disproportionately impact the communities of color and our trans sisters. With funds raised from AIDS Walk Los Angeles, we can continue our work to prevent new HIV infections and support people living with HIV, ”added Aguas-Pinzon. "We can't fight it alone and we are proud of you – our friends, families, lawyers and allies who joined us today on AIDS Walk Los Angeles to make sure we prove AIDS has reached its MARCH!"
At 10 am, hikers rode a four-mile loop through downtown Los Angeles and headed back to the Los Angeles City Hall, where they were greeted by The Red Hot Band on stage with All Stars winner Trinity the Tuck. Ru Paul Drag Race. , along with Silky Nutmeg Ganache and Misty Violet. The post-walk show continued with street performances by walkers and acrobats, a Children's Zone and many other activities and attractions for the whole family..
The 35th AIDS Walk in Los Angeles was made possible by generous sponsors. Premier sponsors with a donation of over $ 100k included Delta Air Lines, Gilead Sciences, Inc. and Paul Hastings. Top sponsors with a donation of over $ 50,000 included ABC7, Latham & Watkins, Paramount Studios and Quest Diagnostics. Top sponsors with a $ 25k + donation included Macy's, Inc., McDermott Will & Emery, PepsiCo, ViiV Healthcare, Walgreens; Albertsons, Vons and Pavilions; and Wells Fargo.
Since 1985, hundreds of thousands of walkers and supporters have raised more than $ 88 million in the fight against HIV / AIDS. These funds remain a vital line to support APLA Health, as well as other beneficiaries of the HIV / AIDS health support organization.
Editor's Note: Photos are available at Getty Images.
Photo Credit: Randy Shropshire with Getty Images.
About AIDS Walk Los Angeles: Since 1985, AIDS Walk Los Angeles has attracted hundreds of thousands of supporters to walk and millions to donate, raising more than $ 88 million to fight HIV and AIDS. The funds raised at the event remain a vital lifeline that supports APLA Health's care, prevention and advocacy programs for people living with HIV in Los Angeles County. The funds also benefit more than 20 other HIV / AIDS service organizations that can participate and raise funds through the Community Coalition Initiative (JRC). For more information, visit aidswalkLA.org.
About APLA Health: APLA Health's mission is to achieve health equity and promote well-being for LGBT and other underserved communities and people living and affected by HIV. We remain committed to ending the epidemic in our lives. We are a federally qualified, nonprofit health center that serves more than 15,000 people annually. We provide 20 different services at 16 locations throughout Los Angeles County, including: medical, dental and mental care; Specialized HIV care, counseling and PrEP management; health education and HIV prevention; and STD screening and treatment. For people living with HIV, we offer housing support; benefit counseling; home health care; and the Vance North Life Needs Program food pantries; among several other essential services. In addition, we are leaders in advocacy for policies and legislation that positively impact LGBT and HIV communities and conduct community-based research on issues that affect the communities we serve. For more information, visit us at aplahealth.org.
# # #
Alex Medina APLA Health 213.201.1521 email@example.com