I signed up to participate in the 4th Annual Rock the Red Pump Campaign because I could not believe the statistics on how it affects women and children. As a woman and a mom this is something that could easily affect me personally. My goal as a participant is to make other parents aware of how prevalent this virus still is and to educate them on how it is transmitted and how it could affect their children. Even by just participating I’ve learned a lot and I’d like to share a few things with my readers that I found on the Rock the Red Pump website.
Information About HIV/AIDS:
One of the first steps in the fight against HIV/AIDS is education and awareness. HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) is a virus and AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) is a medical condition caused by the virus after someone’s been infected for awhile. HIV is the virus that we know causes AIDS. It enters the body and infects immune system cells, as well as other cells in the body — causing more copies of the virus to be produced. A person who has been infected with HIV is HIV-positive, but does not necessarily have AIDS.
There are many myths about how HIV is spread. You can’t acquire HIV by drinking from a water fountain, sitting on a toilet seat, hugging or touching an HIV-infected person, or by eating off plates and utensils. However, here are some ways HIV can be transmitted:
- By way of bodily fluids (blood, semen, and vaginal secretions) during sexual contact. Saliva is not considered a transmission route for HIV.
- By sharing needles to inject drugs. Infected blood can be exchanged between the parties who are using the same needle and syringe.
- Through the transfusion of infected blood or blood products
- HIV-infected woman can pass HIV to their babies during pregnancy, during delivery, or while breast-feeding
Som facts about Youth and HIV:
- In 2006, the CDC estimates that almost 46,000 young people, ages 13-24, were living with HIV in the US. Women comprised 28% of these HIV/AIDS cases among 13-24 year-olds.
- African-American young adults are disproportionately affected by HIV, accounting for 60% of HIV/AIDS diagnoses in 13-24 year olds in 2006.
- In 2006, teen girls represented 39% of AIDS cases reported among 13–19 year-olds. Black teens represented 69% of cases reported among 13–19 year-olds; Latino teens represented 19%.
- The largest number of HIV/AIDS diagnoses during recent years was for women aged 15–39.
How You Can Get Involved:
There are many ways that you can become involved with The Red Pump Project and support our mission of HIV/AIDS prevention and awareness.
1. Get on our mailing list so you can get all our updates about happenings around the country. We send out a newsletter quarterly, with increased frequency during the time of our “Rock the Red Pump” campaign. Still. We won’t spam you or clutter your inbox. This is a promise.
3. Rock the Red Pump™ on your blog. Be a part of our annual campaign to get bloggers to commemorate National Women and Girls’ HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, by placing a “Rock the Red Pump” badge on their sites to represent the strength and courage of women fighting HIV/AIDS or affected by the disease. The 4th annual campaign kicks off January 2012. If you’re on our mailing list, you’ll be the first know!
4. Write a blog post for the Red Pump site about why you care about HIV/AIDS. Why do you “Rock the Red Pump?” Stories reach farther than statistics, and we want to hear yours. You can submit a post idea to info at redpump dot org.
5. Partner with us for an event in your area for an HIV/AIDS awareness day. Please keep in mind that partnership with Red Pump is important when you choose to use our marks. We’re very open to partnering with organizations and individuals, so email us with what you have in mind!
6. Become an ambassador. We’re currently only looking for ambassadors in New York City and Washington DC. To learn more and apply, read our ambassadors page.