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Joined: Jul 2011
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Education is absolutely the key to fighting this disease. I started being an HIV/AIDS educator in the early 1980's at the beginning of the recognition of the pandemic. I spoke to diverse groups including a lock-in of conservative Christian high school and college students from four churches as well as the youth ministers and adult sponsors. The billed me as an "AIDS Evangelist" and even gave me a plaque stating that. I'd never imagined standing in such a pulpit and talking graphically about sexuality, condoms, and the whole nine yards and halfway expected either a lightning bolt or a lynching by the adults. I had a question and answer period and while there were a couple a silly questions, most were pretty important and I think they learned quite a bit about both preventing exposure and compassion for sufferers. After the kids filed out for pizza, the whole group of adults swarmed me. It turned out that they wanted their own more private question and answer session and many were quite frank about having possibly exposed themselves. I spent another hour and a half with them and later all four churches founded AIDS ministries, formed respite care teams, and one church built an entire subsidized apartment complex for people living with AIDS. My own kids got the facts about sexuality as well as about HIV early on, the talk about their bodies beginning when they could talk in sentences. As a result, they had no STD's and no unwanted pregnancies. My grandkids were born into marriages and desired. I'm watching that education process go on to another generation. I learned from my own girls that the schools do a woeful job of educating kids about sexuality and AIDS and parents are foolish to think the school takes them off of the hook.

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Originally Posted By: Angela J. Shirley
Hi Everyone:

My heart goes out to the children who have contacted aids through no fault of theirs.

Please keep them in your prayers.

Angela

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