AIDS Action Committee's Male Center Salutes Creators and Honors First
AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts, Inc. (AAC) and its MALE Center in Boston’s South End salute the National Association of People with AIDS (NAPWA) and AIDS Action Council in Washington, DC and other organizational sponsors for launching the first National Gay Men’s HIV/AIDS Awareness Day on Sat., Sep. 27, 2008. The National Gay Men’s HIV/AIDS Awareness Day recognizes the overwhelming impact of AIDS and HIV infection on gay men and men who have sex with men (MSM) and highlights the need for urgent attention to the lives of gay men and MSM affected by the HIV/AIDS epidemic. The awareness day also gives an opportunity for all Americans to join the Call for Action for a National AIDS Strategy that would include a targeted response to HIV/AIDS among gay men and MSM.
“Our mission at The MALE Center is focused on serving this very community that is highlighted by this historic national day,” said Michael Shankle, MPH, Director, The MALE Center, a program of AIDS Action Committee. “While we honor all of the Awareness Days throughout the year, it is particularly outstanding that one designated for gay and other men who have sex with men is now part of the national calendar.”
The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s revised estimate of new infections shows the continuing, severe burden of HIV on gay men and MSM across the nation. Gay men comprised 53% of estimated new HIV infections in 2006. From 2000, MSM is the only group showing an increase in estimated new infections. Among gay men and MSM, young black and Hispanic men and white men in their 30s and 40s are significantly impacted by new HIV infections. Beyond the numbers are the lives of gay men who remain vulnerable to HIV/AIDS. That reality belies the complacency that has set in for far too long about HIV among gay men.
“We are grateful to NAPWA and the organizational sponsors and join them to urge the public, media and our government officials to use this awareness day to reinvigorate focus on HIV/AIDS and gay men,” said Shankle. “We will continue vigorously to do our part to increase access to voluntary HIV counseling and testing, HIV prevention, and care and treatment for gay men and MSM, and we support the national AIDS strategy to end the epidemic among gay men and among all people living in the U.S.” For more information: www.nationalaidsstrategy.org or www.aac.org.
[Editor’s note: Following is a list of activities at the MALE Center, including tonight’s Bridging the Gap and Art Show opening.]
Tonight, Sep. 26, and Coming Soon at the MALE Center
Bridging The Gap - tonight! Friday September 26, 7:00PM-10:00PM The MALE Center monthly social is back from our summer vacation. Enjoy a relaxed conversation-friendly environment with appetizers and beverages provided by The MALE Center.
The MALE Center is proud to host the opening of "Tidal Pool Painting"; the artwork of David Buxton. David uses acrylic and fabric on canvas to create a sculptural surface that is abstracted to invoke the feeling of looking at a tidal pool. His work is truly a must see!
Know your HIV status; get tested for free at The MALE Center. Rapid testing involves a small finger stick and results are ready in about 10 minutes. There are many options for times to either schedule an appointment or to drop in for a test. The MALE Center offers evening rapid HIV testing appointments weekly on Thursdays until 9PM. This is the only rapid HIV testing location in Boston to offer late-night hours. The MALE Center also offers a monthly Saturday rapid HIV testing clinic from 11AM 5PM, making it the only location in Boston to offer Saturday rapid HIV testing. The next Saturday testing date is October 18 Appointments are strongly encouraged, and walk-ins will be accommodated. To learn more about HIV Rapid Testing at The MALE Center, to talk to a prevention specialist, or to make an appointment to get tested, call 617.450.1987
Town Hall HIV Prevention Strategy Meeting #3 Tuesday, October 21, 6:30PM-8:00PM New infection rates are rapidly on the rise and we need a community-constructed strategy to get back in the game. Let’s continue the conversation and work to develop a strategy to end this epidemic. All are welcome - we WANT to talk to you and the community-at-large to figure out what we can do next. Although it’s not required, please let us know if you are planning to attend by using the contact information below.
The MALE Center welcomes gay, bisexual, queer and questioning men, regardless of HIV status. We also welcome allies of the community who are interested in working with a diverse group of sexual minority men in an affirming way. The MALE Center is located at 571 Columbus Avenue adjacent to the intersection of Massachusetts Avenue. Email us at: email@example.com or call 617-450-1987 The MALE Center offers a variety of programs and services including FREE confidential HIV testing every weekday, including Thursday evenings until 9:00PM. There is Saturday free testing once each month. October 18th is the next Saturday test day.
AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts is the state’s leading provider of prevention and wellness services for people vulnerable to HIV infection. It provides services to one in six people in Massachusetts living with an HIV diagnosis. These services include HIV counseling and testing; needle exchange; mental health counseling; housing assistance; and legal services. AIDS Action works to prevent new HIV infections, support those affected by HIV, and tackle the root causes of HIV/AIDS by educating the public and health professionals about HIV prevention and care; and advocating for fair and effective HIV/AIDS policy at the city, state, and federal levels. Founded in 1983, AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts is New England’s first and largest AIDS service organization. Learn more at www.aac.org.