BOSTON, Mass.—Registration is now open for the 28th annual AIDS Walk Boston & 5K Run, which will be held June 2, 2013. The Walk & 5K Run draws 10,000 to 15,000 participants and is AIDS Action’s largest annual fundraiser. The Walk is 6.2-miles long. The 5K Run is a competitive, timed event, and is fully sanctioned by the USA Track & Field Association. The AIDS Walk & 5K Run will begin and end at the DCR Hatch Memorial Shell on the Charles River Esplanade in Boston. Registration and check-in begins at 7:30 a.m. The Walk begins at 10 a.m.; the 5K Run begins at 9:50 a.m. WCVB-TV Eye Opener Newscaster Randy Price will emcee the event, which also includes a Wellness Festival. Participants can register for the AIDS Walk & 5K Run at www.aidswalkboston.org. There is neither a registration fee nor a minimum funds raised requirement in order to participate in the Walk. The 5K Run is $25 to register. AIDS Action expects to raise approximately $1 million from participants.
“The money raised by AIDS Walk and 5K Run participants is critical to our ability to connect people with health care, peer support, counseling, free HIV testing, housing and fuel assistance, and legal services,” said Rebecca Haag, President & CEO of AIDS Action, who walks each year and contributes personally to every AIDS Action employee who walks or runs. “We urge everyone in the Boston area to join us or donate to the thousands of walkers and runners who do participate. Since 1999, we have helped reduce new HIV diagnoses in Massachusetts by 53 percent. This means that nearly 6,000 people who might otherwise have become HIV positive have remained negative, and the state will save more than $2 billion in HIV-related health care costs.”
Corporate sponsors of this year’s AIDS Walk and 5K Run include Macy’s, Bristol-Myers Squibb, EMD Serono, Whole Foods Market, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Partners HealthCare, Eastern Bank, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, PharmaHealth Pharmacy, Jet Blue, and Polar Seltzer. This year’s media sponsors are WCVB-TV 5 and El Planeta. Additional sponsorship opportunities are still available. Call Jacoba van Heugten at 617-450-1512 or email email@example.com.
— AIDS Walk Boston (@aidswalkboston) March 12, 2013
AIDS Action will support the Boston AIDS Walk with a robust social media outreach and fundraising plan:
- Walkers can fundraise through their Facebook pages by installing the Fundraising with Facebook application. Last year, walkers raised approximately $25,000 in donations through Facebook.
- Follow @AIDSWalkBoston and the hashtag #AWB5K for information about HIV/AIDS and the Boston AIDS Walk.
Facts About HIV/AIDS
- Between FY 2000 and FY 2013, the budget for HIV/AIDS has decreased 38% from $51.7 million to $32.1 million.
- Between 2000 and 2010 (the last year for which statistics are available), the number of people living HIV/AIDS in Massachusetts increased 40%, placing substantial demands on existing prevention and treatment programs.
- In 2010, just over half (51%) of all HIV infection diagnoses in the state occurred among men who reported male-to-male sex as the way they were exposed to HIV; that is up from 44% of men newly diagnosed with HIV reporting male-to-male sex as their exposure mode in 2001.
- 11% of HIV infection diagnoses in MA from 2008 to 2010 were of adolescents and young adults age 13-24.
- Blacks make up only 6% of the state’s population, but they comprise 29% of those living with HIV/AIDS in MA.
- Hispanics make up only 8% of the state’s population, but they comprise 25% of those living with HIV/AIDS in MA.
- As of 2011, male-to-male sex and injection drug use were the leading reported exposure modes for HIV infection for those living with HIV/AIDS in MA accounting for 36% and 21% of all exposures, respectively.
Facts About AIDS Walk Boston & 5K Run
The AIDS Walk was first held in 1986 and is one of the first walks to be introduced in Boston, as well as the country. The 5K Run was added to open up fundraising to runners. Historically AAC’s largest fundraising event, it has raised over $38 million for programs and services to support those living with and at risk for contracting HIV/AIDS.
About AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts
AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts is the state’s leading provider of prevention and wellness services for people vulnerable to HIV infection. It provides services to one in six people in Massachusetts living with an HIV diagnosis. These services include HIV counseling and testing; needle exchange; mental health counseling; housing assistance; and legal services. AIDS Action works to prevent new HIV infections, support those affected by HIV, and tackle the root causes of HIV/AIDS by educating the public and health professionals about HIV prevention and care; and advocating for fair and effective HIV/AIDS policy at the city, state, and federal levels. Founded in 1983, AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts is New England’s first and largest AIDS service organization. Learn more at www.aac.org.
[From a News Release]