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World AIDS Day marks 30th anniversary | Local news

VALDOSTA – World AIDS Day is a global health care service held annually on December 1. The event offers an…

VALDOSTA – World AIDS Day is a global health care service held annually on December 1.

The event offers an opportunity for people all over the world to reconcile in the fight against HIV, show support for those living with HIV / AIDS and celebrate those who have died, according to the area’s health care officers.

Althea Daniels, HIV Prevention Manager, said World AIDS Day was the first global health day and the first held in 1988. This year marks the 30th anniversary and South Health District officials hope that the contagious disease program will raise awareness and participation to mark exact.

In collaboration with Valdosta State University, the ID program will host a World AIDS Day event at 1

1:30 – 13:00 Friday, November 30, VSU at the University Center, Cypress Room.

Cass Marie Downing, HIV activist and advocate, will be guest speaker and share his previous fight with drug abuse and HIV diagnosis.

Downing was diagnosed with HIV during a time when AIDS deaths had reached a full-time level, health officials said.

“Stigma, discrimination and fear did not stop Cass from living,” said Daniel. “She chose to fight back by becoming a lawyer for HIV / AIDS through community work and HIV / AIDS resource center. We are pleased to have her as our speaker during the 30th anniversary event.”

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Estimate More Than 1 , 1 million people in the United States today live with HIV and only one in seven knows it, health officials said. Young people are most likely to be unaware of their infection. Among people aged 13-24 years with HIV, 51 percent do not appreciate it, they said.

To give more people the opportunity to know their HIV status, all county health departments in southern Georgia (Ben Hill, Berrien, Brooks, Cook, Echols, Irwin, Lanier, Lowndes, Tift and Turner) will provide free HIV Test, 8:00 to 17:00 Thursday 29 November. No appointment required.

Free HIV testing will also be held after the event on November 30 at Valdosta State University, 1-2 p.m. in the University Center, Rose Room.

Lunch will be provided during the event; However, people who are interested in participating must register by calling (229) 245-8711, ex. 288 or 303. Online registration is also available at

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