One of the reasons I moved to San Francisco was to get involved in HIV prevention and counseling. Back at the end of 2010, I reached that goal, and a short time later was lucky enough to find a paying job with the same amazing organization.
Days and weeks and months go by, and it's easy to find comfort in the daily routine. My work allows me to watch the lives of others as they work to become healthy, strong individuals. It also allows me to see the benefits that come from the monies raised in fundraisers like the AIDS Walk. It's for these reasons (and more) that I decided to walk this year.
It's not the first time I've walked and raised money for organizations that work with folks dealing with HIV. Back in 1991 (when I was just 16) I joined forces with my educational teen theater troupe, the Positive Force Players, and we marched through the streets of Phoenix, AZ.
I also had the opportunity to volunteer with the NAMES Project as the Quilt made a stop there on its nationwide journey. Today I realize that the organization I work for was providing mental health services to clients all those years ago.
In 2010, with the help of my friends and family, I raised money for AIDS Project Los Angeles and completed the LA Marathon. All those months of training coupled with the exhausting feeling of crossing the finish line has taught me that we really CAN do anything we set our minds to.
This time it's not a marathon... but it's certainly still an important event. This time, I'm walking with my friends at Project Open Hand, and the money we raise will help so many incredible organizations that really do change the lives of people in need. (They provide food to seniors and the critically ill in the San Francisco bay area.)
The hard part, for me, is asking for donations. Money is always tight, and we are all on budgets... So I decided to provide some prizes as added incentive to give (and to encourage action)! Some generous individuals and companies have provided a number of "thank you" prizes that will be given away in a drawing after the walk.
For every $25.00 you donate, your name will be entered once into the drawing. To join in, first make your donation HERE.
Then, review the prizes and goodies on my walk page HERE, and fill out the form on that page with your information and you'll be entered to win!
What can you win? (I'm so glad you asked!)
The grand prize:
Yes, seriously. a Sidekick. The most amazing, incredible, fantastic wheel you'll ever put fluff in! It's up for grabs, brand spanking new, and will end up in the arms of some charitable giver! In addition, the good folks at Purlescence Yarns donated a prize pack AND lessons to get you started!
Other amazing prizes include:
More prizes are to be added. (Visit my website to see the complete list, along with images)
One more way you can help: Share this blog post with your friends. We are raising money for amazing programs, and at the same time, we are reminding people that it's important (and often free!) to get tested for HIV. Knowing your status and communicating with others is one of the best ways to help.
From the bottom of my heart, I have to thank you for taking time to read, share, and give.
Head on over, to the donation page HERE and secure some chances for these incredible prizes!
Thank you for your support!