I recently joined the AIDS/LifeCycle, a week long bicycle ride across California and fundraiser. A 7-day, 545-mile bike ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles to make a world of difference in the lives of people living with HIV and AIDS. The proceeds are used to help with HIV/AIDS research and raise funds for The Los Angeles Gay Center. My goal is to raise 3,000.00 dollars and cycle the week long journey.
It may seem as if AIDS is a thing of the past with all the advancements in medicines and AIDS awareness but in California alone there are 151,000 people living with HIV. Nationally, 70 percent of all new infections occur in communities of color and people under the age of 25 are increasingly affected. As a 25 year old Hispanic, I fall into both of these demographics. This ride is important to me because it has given me the knowledge and the means to help those living with this awful disease.
As a resident of the Coachella Valley and a straight ally for the local gay community, I feel it is vital to help those friends who are at a much larger risk of being infected with HIV. 73% of all HIV/AIDS cases occur among gay men, far exceeding 53%, nationally. Although, I am not gay, I feel that if one of us has AIDS then we all do.
As an avid cyclist, I have been working attentively on raising bicycle awareness and organizing bicycle rides throughout the Coachella Valley. As an amateur photographer, I have documented my progress with my ‘ONELESSCAR’ project located on FivethousandPhotography.
I will dedicate all of my time and energy for the next three months to my fundraising and training for the LifeCycle. I will do everything I can to reach my goals and join the thousands of others participating in this life changing ride. This journey is very significant to me because I know I can make a difference and help brings AIDS to an end. I would be incredibly thankful for any donations that could be made in my name, any sort of contribution will make a difference and help me reach my goal.
ALC participant # 6087