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AIDS: Testing dates

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Community HIV testing day in Englewood

The Englewood United Methodist Church, 6400 S. Stewart Ave. in Chicago, will host a National HIV Testing Day event called "Community and Faith Connecting to Sing Praises and Save lives. The event is Sat., June 25, at 4 p.m.

Rev. Harriette Cross, host pastor, welcomes people to the event, which will feature the Flora Robinson Chorale and Friends.

Participating Organizations (still in formation): Come Alive Ministry of Faith; Englewood Advocates of Grace for Lives, Education and Service (E.A.G.L.E.S. - East Side UMC; Englewood UMC; Faith UMC; Grace Calvary UMC; Greater Englewood UMC; West Englewood UMC; Pleasant Green M.B. Church, 140-46 W. 59th St.; Pleasant Green M.B. Church, 7545 S. Vincennes Ave., Rust Memorial UMC); Grand Boulevard Federation; Greater Westside Development Corporation; Making A Daily Effort (M.A.D.E.); 6th Legislative District; Southside HIV/AIDS Resource Providers (S.H.A.R.P.); Teamwork Englewood/

For Information, Call 773-846-9839 (Sylvia Jo)

Another HIV Testing day event will be held on Monday, June 27, 10 a.m. — 2 p.m., at the Ruth M. Rothstein CORE Center, STEP UP - Get Tested. Know Your HIV Status, 1901 W. Harrison St., Chicago,

Free onsite rapid HIV testing and results provided in 10 minutes. Contact: Peter McLoyd, 312-572-4649, .

June 24 doc screening on HIV/AIDS

In an effort to overcome the stigma surrounding HIV/AIDS, which disproportionately impacts the African-American and Hispanic youth communities, the Chicago Black Gay Men's Caucus (CBGMC) and McDermott/Haymarket Center are banding together to present A Mirror to the Heart: Breaking the Stigma of HIV/AIDS, a documentary highlighting HIV prevention activities and the personal experiences of youth who are taking leadership roles in the fight against HIV/AIDS.

The screening will be held at 6:30 p.m., Friday, June 24, at McDermott/Haymarket Center, 932 W. Washington, Chicago.

Sponsored by the Illinois Department of Public Health Center for Minority Health Services and BASUAH (Brothers And Sisters United Against HIV/AIDS), the documentary will be followed by a discussion led by a panel of experts. Taskforce Prevention and Community Services will provide HIV testing. This free event is open to the public. To learn more, go to .

The panel discussion will be moderated by Christian Castro, the program director of the Latino Commission on AIDS, a program that assists Hispanic-serving organizations and coalitions to address the needs of the emerging HIV-positive population.

Others who will be on the panel will be Alan D. Johnson, adolescent research director of the DePaul University School of Public Health; Stephen Armstead, OVAH! Program outreach coordinator for the Center on Halsted; youth activist and artist KOKUMO; Andre Darey; Leveon Perkins; Jermaine Perry; and Anthony Singleton.

Gina Lathan Whitener, the executive producer of the documentary, will also participate in the event.

The documentary encourages an open discussion about stigma, which is a leading barrier to successful HIV counseling, testing and treatment. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the numbers of youth contracting HIV/AIDS are staggering, especially African-American and Hispanic youth.

In 2009, an estimated 8,294 men and women of all races and ethnicities age 13 to 24 received a diagnosis of HIV infection, representing about 19 percent of the persons given a diagnosis that year. African Americans were disproportionately affected, accounting for about half of all HIV infections. Hispanics accounted for about 15 percent.

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