World AIDS Day: People Behind Statistics

A Time to Remember

So often when we think about HIV/AIDS, we think about statistics. World AIDS Day, observed each year on December 1, redirects our attention away from the statistics and reminds us of the people behind those numbers.

Through artistic expressions at World AIDS Day events, we mourn the loss of loved ones, celebrate their lives, and encourage each other to continue in the fight against HIV/AIDS in our world.

AIDS Delaware Events

Many local organizations are sponsoring events to mark World AIDS Day. Among them is AIDS Delaware, the State of Delaware’s first and largest AIDS Service Organization (ASO).

The agency was founded in 1984 by a group of concerned volunteer activists addressing the needs of the emerging AIDS community in our state. Over the last 25 years AIDS Delaware has become a professional not-for-profit agency working for the health of the human family.

Upcoming events include:

  • World AIDS Day Cabaret celebrating life through music at 7:00pm on Thursday, December 1, 2011, at the OperaDelaware Studios, 4 South Poplar Street, Wilmington, DE. For more information, email Michelle Kramer-Fitzgerald at or call 302.652.6776.
  • Youth HIV Forum will be held on Saturday, December 3, 2011, at the Bancroft Elementary School, 700 North Lombard Street, Wilmington, DE. This free event will feature special guest LoLisa Gibson, an HIV+ author and educator. Doors open at 12:00pm and the event starts at 1:00pm. For more information, email Frank Hawkins at or call 302.652.6776.

Rehoboth Beach Activities

This year marks the 18th year for World AIDS Day events being held in Rehoboth Beach, put together by representatives from a number of organizations and faith communities in the area.

All events are free and open to the community:

  • World AIDS Day Art Exhibit and reception will be held at the CAMP Rehoboth Community Center on Thursday, December 1, from 4:30 to 6 p.m. The artwork will remain on display at the Community Center through mid-December and is available for viewing during business hours.
  • Gathering at the Bandstand the community is invited to gather at 6:15 p.m. on December 1 at the Rehoboth Beach Bandstand (at the intersection of Rehoboth Avenue and the Boardwalk in downtown Rehoboth Beach). Award-winning singer/songwriter Doug James will be providing music as community members sign a “signature panel” for the NAMES Project AIDS Memorial Quilt.

    The AIDS Quilt is the largest piece of folk art in the world, measuring more than 1,293,300 square feet in size and weighing more than 54 tons. Currently the Quilt contains more than 91,000 names of people who have lost their lives to HIV/AIDS.

  • Candlelight Walk will begin through the downtown area at 6:30 p.m. A 12 foot by 12 foot section of the AIDS Memorial Quilt will be carried as part of the procession (weather permitting).
  • Service of Remembrance and Hope beginning at 7 p.m. at All Saints Church, 18 Olive Avenue, Rehoboth Beach. This service is a careful blending of the Spoken Word (a ceremonial reading of the names of persons who have lost their lives to HIV/AIDS) and the Sung Word. Music featured will be “A Stitch in Time”, a song written by Delawarean Thomas Meehan. To have the name of a family member or friend who has died from AIDS added to the list of names read at the service, call the CAMP Rehoboth Community Center at 302-227-5620 or email
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