To commemorate National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day, an initiative to engage the Black community about the importance of HIV education and testing, on February 7 the T.R.U.T.H project will hold a performance and panel discussion with Houston health professionals and advocates to discuss and answer questions about HIV and mental health.
The one-night only event is titled “I am My Brother/Sister’s Keeper: Fight HIV/AIDS” and will also be providing free HIV and Syphilis testing for all who attend. The show is sponsored by the Houston Department Bureau of HIV/STD Prevention and Wagreens, with additional support from AIDS Foundation Houston, and will be moderated by author and empowerment coach Jai Sneed.
"A tremendous amount of needless pain and suffering can be lessened by setting the stage for healthy, informative community discussion with those most affected," T.R.U.T.H founder Kevin Anderson said to Broadway World. "We can't address HIV/ AIDS without touching on mental and emotional health. The public health and scientific communities are working on great new biomedical interventions, but uptake and effectiveness are stagnated when other needs aren't being met."
Panelists include licensed professional counselors Dr. Kimm Perez and Milton Smith, Human Rights activist and HIV advocate Deondre Moore, PrEP and HIV Advocate Adonis May, clinical social worker DeShantra Moore, HIV/AIDS advocate Tiffany Quinton, and will feature artists Nick Muckleroy and visual artist Ashley “Pinklomein” Price.
Those with mental health issues are at higher risk of becoming HIV-positive, and once poz are more likely to have negative health outcomes, especially if they are Black gay men.
The T.R.U.T.H Project holds quarterly performances, and since it began has reached over 5,000 attendees. And recently, The Texas State Department of Health recognized its efforts and awarded a grant allowing them to expand outreach by partnering with recording artists like Marsha Ambrosius and Chisette Michele.
“I am My Brother/Sister’s Keeper: Fight HIV/AIDS” is free to attend, and will be held on Tuesday, February 7, 2017, at 7pm. at the Montrose Center, 401 Branard Street.