Hydeia Broadbent Speaks Out on National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day

AIDS activist Phill Wilson once said that the lesson we need to take from Hurricane Katrina is that the government is not going to send a boat for us on time. That means we must educate our own community around HIV and AIDS. Whether it’s on Facebook, on Twitter or through our own black media networks, we *can* save ourselves –we just have to decide to do so.

There are some among us who are not afraid to speak up – and to you I say thank you on behalf of all of us.

Thank you Darian “Big Tigger” Morgan for educating the hip-hop community about HIV/AIDS through your organization, Street Corner Foundation, and for making it cool to get tested.

I want to say thank you to the people over at the Black AIDS Institute, including Phill Wilson, Charlie Baran and Lenee Richards, who work day and night to raise awareness around this issue.

And I want to say thank you to Professor Cynthia Davis at Charles Drew University in Los Angeles.  When she’s not teaching she takes a van out to all the inner-city schools in LA County to test kids and to educate them about HIV.

These are just a few of the unspoken heroes I’d like for us to pay tribute to during Black History Month, but please know that you, too, can be a hero. All you need to do on this day is:

*Post an HIV/AIDS fact on Facebook or Twitter or whatever other social media sites you use.

*Go out and get tested for HIV, and bring a loved one with you to get tested as well.

*Decide from this day forward that you will discuss HIV/AIDS with friends and family members even when it’s not National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, National Testing Day or World AIDS Day.

This is true love in action – for yourself and for others.

We have come too far to turn back now.

To find an HIV testing center in your area visit http://www.hivtest.org

For more about HIV/AIDS all year round, follow me on Twitter @hydeiabroadbent.

Hydeia Broadbent is an international HIV/AIDS activist and motivational speaker who was born with the disease.

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