Memorials will be held around Australia on May 20 to remember the lives of those lost to AIDS and call for a future free of HIV-related stigma and discrimination.
Every year, people come together on the third Sunday in May for memorial services and events to remember those who have died and to push for global action to end HIV/AIDS.
The International AIDS Candlelight Memorial, coordinated by the Global Network of People Living With HIV, is one of the world’s oldest and largest grassroots campaigns for HIV awareness in the world, first started in 1983.
The events are led by a coalition of over 1000 community organizations in 115 countries, and several memorials will be held around Australia this weekend with a theme this year of “Reflecting on our past, preparing for our future”.
In Brisbane, members of the University of Queensland’s multi-faith chaplaincy will be marking the 2018 International AIDS Candlelight Memorial on campus at the Duchesne College Chapel from 6pm to 7:30pm. For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
In Darwin, the Northern Territory AIDS & Hepatitis Council will host a memorial on Sunday, May 20 at Lake Alexander from 5.30pm to 8.30pm.
All welcome to attend, with DIY candle making, memorial lanterns and guest speakers on the night.
“The International AIDS Candlelight Memorial reminds us of the tremendous impact that HIV and the AIDS movement have had on our lives,” James Emery from NTAHC said.
“The Memorial emphasizes the need for people living with and affected by HIV to join hands and reflect on the past and the precious lives that have been lost.
“The Memorial also calls on us to share our stories of challenge, perseverance, and triumph to educate the current and next generations about what the AIDS movement has achieved over the last three decades.”
A memorial will also be held in Alice Springs at Monte’s Lounge, on the corner of Todd Street and Stott Terrace, from 5:30pm.
In Sydney, community members at the Eternity Playhouse at 39 Burton Street in Darlinghurst for a memorial from 3:30pm to 5:30pm.
At the memorial, names of those lost to AIDS will be read out by friends, partners and family members.
In Melbourne, Living Positive Victoria will host a memorial at Queensbridge Square from 5pm, with speeches from Bill O’Loughlin and Fiona Patten MLC and a performance from the LowRez Male Choir.
In Canberra, the AIDS Action Council will host the city’s 35th Candlelight Memorial in the Great Hall of University House at Australian National University on Sunday, May 20.
Guests at the memorial will hear from AIDS Action Council president Dr Tim Dyke, and HIV advocates Sarah Feagan and Bill Paterson.
In Perth, Positive WA will host a memorial in Robertson Park on Fitzgerald Street from 6pm to “reduce stigma, ensure access, increase resources, and promote involvement.”