Hello, I know a lot of people here at MM, but maybe not everyone, so I should introduce myself.Here's a picture of me last fall at the AIDS Walk, with the Director od AIDS Services of Austin (who is movie star handsome) and a gorgeous sash they made me for having done the AIDS Walk every one of the 25 years it has been in existence:
I live in Austin & besides progressive politics, the most important thing in the world to me is the AIDS Walk that is in October & the Hill Country Ride for AIDS, in April. The Ride is really my love & my heart. Because it takes training to get ready for, you get to know people better & I have come to know many people involved with it, including many people who are HIV+. Some of the people I love best in this world - people who have done so much good I can't even tell you - are HIV+ & I want them to have the care they need. Even more than that, I want total strangers, who may not have done great things, to have the care they need. They need more care, the people who don't have the support networks. So that's why I work so hard to raise money for this cause, so everyone can get the care they need.
This April, I'll be doing the Hill Country Ride for AIDS once again. The Ride is a beautiful, magical, wonderful event. If you are in the Austin area, I highly recommend participating. There are ride distances varying from 11 to 100 miles, and this year there is a train run/walk, also - with 5K, 10K & half-marathon options. It is super family-friendly, with lots of stuff for kids to do. and the food -- cyclists know their food & this event has really amazing food. If you can't participate, maybe you could donate -- here's my the Hill Country Ride for AIDS page. If you want to participate, when you sign up, please join Team RunTex, as I'm the captain & I need team members! (any MM people in Central Texas -- free training groups for riding or running, on Saturdays & Sundays, and free yoga, too!)
Today I wanted to tell y'all what your donations do.
$35 covers one rapid HIV rest - we know that 40% of HIV+ people don't know it yet. Through testing, we can get them into life saving care, and further reduce the spread of the virus.
$60 pays for a one month supply of medical prescriptions. Medications can reduce the virus so much that it keeps someone healthy and also reduces the risk of passing it along.
$120 provides education for 440 people. Education is one of the most important tools in reducing new infections.
$250 provides 3 family counseling sessions. It can be devastating for a family when a member is diagnosed, and we know that an intact family unit promotes health and provides a built in support.
$500 provides a month of rent for one family in supportive housing. Assistance with food, daily chores, trips to medical appointments and social support create a foundation for continued health and a step toward independence.
$1,000 gives 450 home cooked meals for hospice patients. When in hospice, there are often unique food needs. You can make sure that final days are spent with delicious food that doesn't upset someone's stomach.
So those are the wonderful things that your donations to the Hill Country Ride for AIDS can do. I know that cash is hard to come by these days & everyone is asking for some. Well, so am I. Please donate if you can.
And because it is Monday, and I need some energy - I'm trying to lose weight for my training & by my training, here's some music -- not U2 (which is my normal obsession) this time, but cute Scottish boys Snow Patrol (so I find thinking about cute boys motivating while I'm exercising -- is that so wrong?):
Update: I just got an e-mail from the Ride Office about an upcoming matching opportunity:
When you make a gift to ASA through the Amplify Austin campaign between March, 4th, 7pm and March, 5th, 7pm (3/4 7pm - 3/5 7pm) you've made a difference for people affected by HIV and AIDS. Just $25 provides a month's worth of nutritious food. To make your gift go even further, as a partner of the St. David's Foundation, each dollar of your gift to ASA will be matched doubling your commitment to healthier lives for people affected by HIV and AIDS. With your matched gift of $50 a client can now feed herself and family and get the dental care she needs. This is a math lesson you don't have to study for. The formula is simple and the solution is YOU!