March 24, 2010

March 24, 2010
Broward County HIV/AIDS Info and Resource Fair

Welcome to another day in my life. Today is Wednesday and I hope you are having a great and safe week so far. I am actually writing today's blog very early in the morning. Chipper (my dog) had a bad night again and I have been up taking care of him since 4am. So needless to say I am tired between taking care of Chipper and being exhausted from attending the event last evening.

I have an appointment with my new HIV doctor this afternoon. Her name is Dr. Shumann and this is my second visit with her. I really enjoyed the first visit and consultation and think we can have a great working relationship and keep this old body of mine going a few more years at least.

Last night, Dab the AIDS Bear and I attended the Broward County HIV/AIDS Information and Resource Fair. We had a great time seeing a few old friends and meeting a ton of new contacts in our new city.

The Broward County HIV Health Services Planning Council and the South Florida AIDS Network's (SFAN) Joint Client/Community Relations Committee hosted the Information and Resource Fair from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Mizell Center, located at 1409 N.W. Sixth St. (Sistrunk Blvd.), in Fort Lauderdale.

The purpose of the event was to link Broward County residents living with HIV/AIDS to treatment and support services made available through several Broward County Ryan White funded programs. This was to reassure residents they are not alone in their journey toward wellness. The event includes:

Presentations on Ryan White services available to eligible Broward County residents

An opportunity for Broward County residents to meet with providers and community based organizations to learn more about the services and programs that are available

Panels of the AIDS Memorial Quilt were on display in honor of lives lost to the pandemic, and to bring hope for the future through education and unity

Free HIV testing

Refreshments were served and there was quite a spread for the crowd.

A Broward County Health Department HIV/AIDS Surveillance Report from January 2010 reveals that there are 16,269 individuals living with the illness in Broward County, and it is estimated more than 6,000 of these individuals are not receiving health care. It is well documented that consistent, high quality health care improves overall quality of life and life expectancy.

The presentations were very informative and well done. While there were many providers there with information, I was a little disappointed in the number of people with HIV and AIDS that attended. But we always had the same problem in other cities I have lived.

Many thanks to SFAN, the Planning Council and Michael Rajner for a well planned event.

Until we meet again; here's wishing you health, hope, happiness and just enough.

big bear hug,

Daddy Dab