HOLLYWOOD — The AIDS Healthcare Foundationbegan its World AIDS Day initiative, “Around the Globe in a Day” with “Keep the Promise,” which welcomed thousands of people for a march down Hollywood Boulevard and a free concert at the Dolby Theater.
“Keep the Promise” was an advocacy effort created to continue to spread awareness about HIV and AIDS. Hosted by actress/choreographer Rosie Perez, the concert was headlined by Patti LaBelle and also featured B Flow, Common, JoJo, Jencarlos Canela, and Espinoza Paz.
In addition, the AIDS Healthcare Foundation presented living legend Harry Belafonte with its Lifetime Achievement Award for his charitable work and activism all over the world at the event.
“The voices of the world were heard last night in Hollywood, Mexico City and Phnom Penh,” AIDS Healthcare Foundation President Michael Weinstein said. “More than a thousand people marched in the streets. Some of the greatest artists of any generation came together on the same stage for one cause.
“An iconic artist, entertainer and activist was honored for his fearless advocacy as part of the global Keep the Promise campaign. As we observe World AIDS Day, the 1.1 million people who died of AIDS last year will be remembered. We will continue to fight for people’s right to access lifesaving treatment, and to educate young people and others who may be at risk.”
Since its inception in 1987, the AIDS Healthcare Foundation has been a provider of HIV prevention services, testing and health care for patients living with HIV.
The mission of Around the Globe in a Day, Keep the Promise and the foundation’s other efforts all over the world is to accelerate the fight against HIV and AIDS.
“Our hope is that our World AIDS Day Keep the Promise concert and march serve as a potent reminder that the fight against HIV/AIDS is not yet won and that these events serve as a clarion call to action,: Weinstein said. “The irony is that we are the victims of our own success: as the AIDS situation improves, with better treatments and more people being able to access them, the urgency of winning the war against AIDS here in the U.S. and around the globe has diminished.
“As a result, HIV/AIDS is increasingly pitted against other important issues as far as funding as well as for the attention of policy makers. It is critical that we continue to speak out through events like Keep the Promise in order to remind governments, public health officials and other stakeholders to keep the promise on AIDS and other key public health issues.”