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26 Sep 2017

QUEST 2018

APAIT is proud to announce the return of our transgender advocacy pageant, QUEST!

Date: Saturday, December 9, 2017
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What is QUEST?

QUEST is designed to encourage the empowerment of the often marginalized transgender community. The event aims to decrease rates of high-risk behaviors in the community, including those contributing to the spread of HIV/AIDS infection. QUEST celebrates uniqueness and diversity, while supporting the transgender community. Previous winners have gone on to become leading advocates for the rights of transgender individuals.

Why is QUEST Important?
HIV/AIDS rates among transgender women are among the highest in the U.S. According to data from the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, the HIV-positivity rate for transgender women is 5.4%; compared to a 1.2% positivity rate for men, and a 0.2% positivity rate for women [DHSP, August 2014].

The extreme discrimination and stigma that transgender women face creates a social context that places them at risk for HIV infection. This includes loss of employment and poverty, being denied medical and other services, and being victimized by violence and abuse. A pageant format provides a culturally appropriate and appealing venue in which to educate and empower the community.

What are the Goals of QUEST?
Through QUEST, we seek to empower transgender men and women with information on HIV transmission and prevention. Additionally, we honor and recognize positive role models who advocate for and support the transgender community. QUEST creates a sense of community to counteract the stigma that leads to low self-esteem and high-risk behaviors among transgender men and women.

How can I apply to be a part of QUEST 2018?

All interested applicants must submit the following by October 23, 2017 for committee review. A submitted application does not guarantee a place in the event. Please follow all directions on the application form.

  1. Complete the Application Form: Quest 2018 – Candidate Application – Due 10.23.2017
  2. Forms will also be available to pick up at the APAIT office at 1730 w. Olympic Blvd. Suite 300, Los Angeles, CA 90015
  3. Si necesita traducción en español, llame al Zulma Velasquez: 213-375-3830 ext. 1808
  4. Send completed application form to Jaden Fields at jadenf@apaitonline.org.

 


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WHAT IS #ACCESStoSTATUS?

On February 17, 2015, we launched #ACCESStoSTATUS, a 2-month crowdfunding campaign to raise funds to procure a mobile testing unit (MTU) for our HIV testing program.  Thanks to your generous contributions, we were able to raise $12,000 through our initial 8-week campaign.  After months of researching viable options for our MTU, we have decided to sign 5-year lease for a Ford Transit 150 van!  We will be using the funds from our initial campaign to cover start-up expenses for our MTU.  The funds will also be used to cover monthly lease payments.  While we raised enough money to cover our initial expenses, we will need to continue to fundraise in order to keep our van on the road for the next five years.  Therefore, we have relaunched #ACCESStoSTATUS as on ongoing fundraising campaign to cover operational expenses for our MTU.

WHY IS #ACCESStoSTATUS IMPORTANT?

According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there are 153,600 people living with HIV in the United States who are unaware of their status [www.aids.gov].  In LA County, there are approximately 9,500 people living with HIV who are unaware of their status [http://publichealth.lacounty.gov/dhsp].  Those who remain unaware of their HIV status are at highest risk for transmitting HIV to their sexual and intravenous drug use partners.   Additionally, they are not likely to be receiving medical care which will result in adverse health outcomes for the individual and the community.  APAIT aims to reach undiagnosed HIV-positive individuals to provide them with the support needed to successfully access and stay in medical care.  By doing so, we will increase the number HIV-positive individuals who are virally suppressed, which will ultimately decrease HIV infection rates.

WHAT CAN I DO TO HELP?

The best way to support our campaign is by making a tax-deductible donation by clicking the banner above.  100% of the funds raised through our campaign will go towards operational expenses for our MTU.  Also, you can spread the word about #ACCESStoSTATUS to your family, friends, and social networks! If you post on social media, don’t forget to use #ACCESStoSTATUS hashtag.  Lastly, you can get an HIV test at our office locations in Los Angeles and Orange counties or wherever you see our #ACCESStoSTATUS van!

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