Gospel and AIDS

By |2010-02-18T09:00:00-05:00February 18th, 2010|News|

National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, a day of national HIV testing, treatment and community mobilization, was recognized on Feb. 7. But for Kick – The Agency for LGBT African Americans, the Black Pride Society and AIDS Partnership Michigan, Sunday, Feb. 21 is the day to raise awareness.
While black people represent approximately 13 percent of the U.S. population, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that the group accounts for 49 percent of the nation’s HIV/AIDS cases. In addition to this, HIV/AIDS was the fourth-leading cause of death for black men and the third leading cause of death for black women, both in the 25-44 age range, according to 2006 statistics.
All three Detroit-based non-profits want to make more people aware of these statistics, and in turn, to celebrate black lives. On Feb. 21 from 1:30-4 p.m., the groups will cohost Gospel and AIDS at the Charles H. Wright Museum. The event aims to promote the idea that “black life is worth saving,” urging community activists to do more to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS in the black communities, LGBT or otherwise. The event also coincides with Kick’s celebration of Black History Month.
Gospel and AIDS will include live performances by local gospel groups, as well as free HIV rapid testing, provided by AIDS Partnership Michigan. The concert will begin at 3 p.m., with testing running throughout the length of the event.
The schedule of performers includes Virgil Chillers, Lakeysha Charee and the University of Michigan Gospel Chorale. Both Chillers and Charee have performed at KICk events in the past, including Gentlemen Preferred, Ladies and Gentlemen Preferred and Holiday in December. the Gospel Chorale, founded in 1972, includes performances by dancers, mimes and American Sign Language interpreters.
The event is free, but space is limited, so RSVPs are required. To request attendance at Gospel and AIDS, e-mail [email protected] To learn more information, call Kick at 313-285-9733 or visit their Web site at http://www.e-kick.org.

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Between The Lines has been publishing LGBTQ-related content in Southeast Michigan since the early '90s. This year marks the publication's 27th anniversary.