AIDS Walk canceled but fundraising continues for HIV groups

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The coronavirus pandemic forced the cancelation of the 30th annual AIDS Walk Atlanta, but fundraising continues for the event’s beneficiaries.

Organizers decided to cancel the Sept. 26 event after consulting the City of Atlanta and public health officials, according to AIDS Healthcare Foundation spokesperson Imara Canady.

“We recognized that it was not going to be in the best interests for the health or safety of our attendees and staff to have an in-person event,” Canady told Project Q Atlanta.

The annual event usually draws thousands of people to Piedmont Park every fall. Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms levied a moratorium on event permits in May that is still in effect.

For 2020, AIDS Walk Atlanta set an ambitious goal of $1.5 million. That’s double last year’s goal. About $45,000 was raised as of Wednesday.

“We won’t be physically gathering in Piedmont Park, but the impact and the needs of the AIDS Walk are still needed now more than ever,” Canady said.

A “massive appeal” to raise money continues through November, he added. AIDS Healthcare Foundation matches every donation dollar-for-dollar.

In addition to AID Atlanta, the 2020 AIDS Walk beneficiaries are Aniz, Center for Black Women’s Wellness, Center for Pan Asian Community Services, Jerusalem House, National AIDS Education & Services for Minorities, Open Hand, Positive Impact Health Centers, Someone Cares Atlanta and ThriveSS.

Photo by Russ Bowen-Youngblood

A Facebook Journalism Project COVID-19 Local News Relief Fund grant makes this story possible.

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