A Woman's Journey: the Ethiopian Family Fund

Y is approximately 35 years old. She was born and raised in Addis Ababa. At the age of about 18, her family arranged a marriage for her. Y said she felt "neither happy or sad about it; that’s just the way things were done." She says her marriage was "difficult," and her husband was unkind. After the birth of two sons, she and her husband separated. But after being apart for some time (during that period she briefly went to Sudan to look for a "better life"--which she never found....), they reconciled. However, when she became pregnant for the third time, he left her again. She began to hear "rumors from friends and neighbors" that he had been unfaithful to her, and was "sick."

Trumping AIDS

As the Trump era begins, only one thing seems to be clear—anything could happen. And as far as HIV/AIDS goes, experts and advocates are not optimistic. Though the President has not, as of this printing, made any clear statements regarding his stance on AIDS and funding for the disease, the trend towards the cutting of public health funding and the elimination of the Affordable Care Act is almost certain to have a negative impact on the 1.2 million people living with HIV in the United States. Moreover, the recently issued executive order impacting international aid organizations pertaining to abortion counseling will likely have a detrimental effect on international AIDS funding coming from the U.S.; HIV prevention is often tied to family planning efforts.

Manzini Youth Care Clinic: Update on the CD4 Count Machine

The 2016 Telluride AIDS Benefit Gala Fashion Show fundraiser was just ending when Manzini Youth Care (MYC) asked for a special contribution for its Community Clinic in Manzini. Our special ask for was funding for a CD4 Count Machine. An accurate CD4 count in HIV/AIDS patients provides valuable feedback indicating whether antiviral treatments are effective in a given patient. For example, a CD4 count below 350 indicates that the medicines are not working effectively enough to prevent patients from acquiring opportunistic diseases such as pneumonia or tuberculosis. Likewise, a CD4 count above 350 reassures the patient that the medicines are indeed effective and patients can confidently continue on with the antiviral dosages prescribed.

Telluride AIDS Benefit more relevant than ever in 2017

Telluride AIDS Benefit more relevant than ever in 2017

AIDS might seem like a distant memory in the wake of a tumultuous 16 month-long election cycle. The soon-to-be Trump presidency is providing an unnerving picture for the future of AIDS related issues. Under the Affordable Care Act, Medicaid was greatly expanded and many prerequisites were dropped to make access to care easier for almost 45% of HIV positive people. Many of these improvements are likely to be cut or trimmed in the new administration. This will make other funding such as that provided by the Telluride AIDS Benefit more relevant than ever. 

Colorado Needle Exchange Programs Ramp Up

Colorado Needle Exchange Programs Ramp Up

Jeff Basinger, the director of regional programs at Western Colorado Aids Project (WestCAP), says needle exchange programs are often misunderstood and research proves the programs are effective in stopping the spread of disease. “With new legislation and subsequent implementation in various communities, these programs have been a step in the right direction in helping stop the spread of HIV,” Basinger says. 

The State of AIDS

The State of AIDS

Kevin Robert Frost gives his interesting perspective on the state of AIDS: 

"I’m confident we’ll develop a cure, but I take nothing for granted. Nothing about HIV/AIDS has ever been straightforward or easy, and this chapter of the AIDS response—the final chapter, we hope—will be no different."

Was Bush Better?

Was Bush Better?

Some praise the Obama administration for laying out a comprehensive plan and bumping up domestic funding to confront the epidemic, while others yearn For the Bush days because of the global initiatives the Republican president started despite his reputation for anti-gay policies. ¶ Jim Driscoll, a gay Nevada-based HIV/AIDS activist who served on the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS during the Bush administration, is among those who believe Bush did more to stop the epidemic.