In April of 2006, thousands of caring and thoughtful individuals from across the state gathered in Fort Lauderdale for the first Florida AIDS Walk, demonstrating their commitment to reversing the course of the AIDS epidemic in Florida. One hundred percent of the funds raised went to HIV/AIDS program initiatives in Florida, providing testing, helping to purchase a new mobile clinic for the South Florida region, and supporting the Magic Johnson Healthcare Clinic.
Every year since then, Florida AIDS Walk has grown in number of participants and funds raised for Florida’s HIV/AIDS affected community. While donations to the Walk continue to subsidize all of the Florida programs and initiatives from its first year, the Florida AIDS Walk has gone on to invite various different Florida organizations with programs that support its residents living with HIV/AIDS to be Beneficiaries of the event – enabling them to keep every penny of every dollar that they raise for themselves, and additionally receiving a generous financial gift, to add an extra boost to their own programs.
In 2012, the directors of Florida AIDS Walk re-invented the event as Florida AIDS Walk and Music Festival, moving the entire experience to Fort Lauderdale’s beautiful beach, and cutting the length of the Walk in half to make room for a celebrity-filled concert at the Walk’s end. Feedback for the change was overwhelmingly positive, and the event has been infused with an entirely new energy! As we look to 2013 and beyond, we hope to see Florida AIDS Walk and Music Festival continue to grow, and take its place among some of the larger AIDS Walks in the country which raise millions of dollars to support the community every year!
Florida AIDS Walk is produced by Event 360 for AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF), a nonprofit organization dedicated to HIV/AIDS prevention, education, accessible healthcare, research and patient advocacy. In Florida, AHF currently serves more than 15,000 people living with HIV/AIDS. AHF’s Out of the Closet Thrift Stores, offers free HIV testing and treatment referral through an AHF Pharmacy built adjacent to the store.
For more information on how to join, help or donate please visit: takeaction.aidshealth.org