GALAEI to launch new campaign!
Love. Affirmation. Support.
Join GALAEI at this year’s Feria del Barrio, September 8th beginning at noon, at 5th and Lehigh,
as they exclusively debut the City’s first initiative of its kind, POSITIVO.
POSITIVO will serve as a reflective visual platform depicting that gay male Latinos and Latinos
living with HIV/AIDS are positively portrayed within their communities and families. This
campaign will be an all-encompassing celebration of the beautiful, proud and supportive Latino
community, while inspiring members of the North Philadelphia Latino communities to get tested
in order to know their status and protect their families.
In Philadelphia, rates of HIV infection are five times the national average. Latinos are
disproportionately impacted by the virus and make up 13.3% of all newly diagnosed HIV cases.
Even more troubling is the fact that Latinos test at later stages after infection, with 34% of all
Latinos having an AIDS diagnoses within 12 months from an HIV positive result, compared to
31% among Blacks and 16% among Whites. This campaign can make a “positive” impact on
reducing HIV transmission in Latino communities.
GALAEI staff members will be on hand to answer any questions or speak with community
members interested in bringing testing to their area. Positivo will also provide same-day HIV
testing at events, and will do so during Feria del Barrio. All Latinos who are gay or who have sex
with men who test during Feria del Barrio will receive a $10 gift card.
Director, Elicia Gonzales, finds hope in the findings of a recent survey completed by GALAEI,
targeting Latino individuals living in the North Philadelphia area and their feelings regarding
those living with HIV/AIDS. According to Gonzales, “POSITIVO will show that Philadelphia’s
Latino community is actually affirming of gay and/or HIV+ Latinos.”
“When GALAEI completed the survey of community members in North Philadelphia, we were
pleasantly surprised to learn that homophobia is no more relevant in that Latino community than
in any other communities. That story is not being told. We continue to live under this false
notion that stigma is rampant in our community.
I am proud of this campaign that celebrates our stories with images of real Latinos from North
Philadelphia communities who embody the POSITIVO spirit of acceptance, pride, family,
respect, beauty, and community.”
On hand for the day to help lyrically spread POSITIVO’s message at Feria del Barrio is Denice
Frohman, a Latina with an incredible amount of love and respect for Latino and LGBT
communities. No stranger to the City of Philadelphia, Frohman is the 2013 Women of the World
Poetry Slam Champion lyricist, and ever the activist, her work is featured in Philadelphia’s
citywide “UnLitter Us” Campaign. Frohman will perform three original pieces along with the
musical spinnings of DJ Nikki Lopez, community activist and GALAEI Youth Coordinator.
Founded in 1989 to respond to the lack of support and resources for its community during the
HIV epidemic, GALAEI acknowledges and represents the mosaic of sexual and gender identities
within our communities. Latin@ represents the multiracial and multicultural experience of
Latinidad and embodies both histories.
By maintaining a strong commitment to being a community based organization dedicated to
serving Latinidad, GALAEI provides social services and referrals around HIV/AIDS and sexual
health, organizing, and networking. They are unwavering in their commitment to the
advancement de nuestra familia.
GALAEI feels that gay and HIV positive Latinos are rarely given the ability or chance to be
supported and highlighted within community structures. Through POSITIVO, GALAEI has taken
the opportunity to show the resilience, beauty and strength of the united Latino community, and
the ways in which it embraces those who have been discriminated against and shunned.
“It’s important to look not only at the alarming statistics impacting our communities, but to
shine a light on the progressive support of those living with HIV/AIDS. We invite you to join us
this September 8th at Feria del Barrio for the debut of ‘POSITIVO‘. Let’s start the conversation
about our stories, our communities, and our spirit that embodies acceptance, pride, family,
respect, beauty, and resilience,”- said Gonzales.
Visit https://www.facebook.com/galaei.philly for more information and to view exclusive
POSITIVO artwork as it is released in partnership with Al Día each week!
For additional information, please contact Sara Ann Kelly at firstname.lastname@example.org or 609.778.7799
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