KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- Health officials in Knox County have planned events and free testing to bring awareness to HIV/AIDS in the Knoxville area.
According to the most recent data from Tennessee Department of Health (2010), in one year alone, Knoxville and the East Tennessee region saw 22 AIDS related deaths and 80 newly diagnosed HIV infections.
A FaithWalk, sponsored by Samaritan Ministry, will be held Saturday afternoon in downtown Knoxville. Beginning with registration at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, walkers will follow a 1.75 mile route through Market Square to First Baptist Church on Main Street. Participants will be walking to raise donations and public awareness, with a goal to end stigma, raise awareness and show love to those affected by HIV in the community.
An evening program begins a 7 p.m. at the Holiday Inn World’s Fair Park, and will include music, skits, light refreshments and a candlelight vigil in memory of those who lives were lost to AIDS. The keynote speaker is Dr. Martha Buchanan. Aja Rodriguez will receive the Outstanding Person award at the World AIDS Day ceremony. Aja is being recognized for her enthusiasm and commitment to HIV prevention and testing.
KNOX COUNTY EVENTS COMMEMORATING WORLD AIDS DAY
Tuesday 11/27 – Free, confidential HIV testing, Pellissippi State Technical Community College, 3435 Division Street; 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Sponsored by Helen Ross McNabb Center and Samaritan Ministry
Tuesday 11/27 – Free, confidential HIV testing, The Edge, 7211 Kingston Pike; 10 p.m. – 12:30 a.m. Sponsored by Helen Ross McNabb Center
Wednesday 11/28 – Free, confidential HIV testing, Pellissippi State Community College, 10915 Hardin Valley Road; 10:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. Sponsored by Helen Ross McNabb Center and Samaritan Ministry
Thursday 11/29 – Free, confidential HIV testing, Pellissippi State al Community College, 1610 East Magnolia Avenue Northeast; noon – 4 p.m. Sponsored by Helen Ross McNabb Center and Samaritan Ministry
Thursday 11/29 – Free, confidential HIV testing, XYZ Club, 1215 North Central Street; 10 p.m. – 12:30 a.m. Sponsored by Helen Ross McNabb Center
Friday 11/30 – Free, confidential HIV testing, 11 a.m. – 2:30 p.m., the Mary Greer room in Hodges Library, 1015 Volunteer Boulevard Southwest, on the University of Tennessee campus. Sponsored by Lambda Student Union and Knox County Health Department.
Friday, 11/30 – Some Hope for the Holidays concert by the Knoxville Gay Men’s Chorus, 6:45 p.m. reception, 7:30 p.m. concert, Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church, 2931 Kingston Pike. A $10 donation is requested.
Saturday 12/1 – FaithWalk; 1 p.m. registration, 2 p.m. brief program at Immaculate Conception Catholic Church at 414 West Vine Avenue, then walk to First Baptist Church on Main Street. Sponsored by Samaritan Ministry, $25 donation
Saturday 12/1 – World AIDS Day Program, Holiday Inn World’s Fair, 7 p.m. Dr. Buchanan is keynote speaker.
Sunday, 12/2 – 10 a.m., HIV/AIDS & Faith Dialogue, Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church, 2931 Kingston Pike
Wednesday, 12/3 – Free, confidential HIV testing, Carousel II, 1501 White Avenue, 10 p.m. to midnight. Sponsored by Knox County Health Department