AIDS Project Rhode Island will host the Annual AIDS Walk for Life this Sunday, April 23, 2017 on the State House lawn. Registration for the walk will open at 10 a.m., followed by a brief speaking program beginning at noon. The walk itself will kick off around 1:00 p.m. “This walk offers us a great opportunity to spread awareness on AIDS and HIV to the Rhode Island community,” said APRI program coordinator Christion Battey. “We’re able to educate people on the services we offer, such as HIV testing, as well as raise money to continue our work.”
This year’s Hope Harris Award will be awarded posthumously to Bea Temkin. The Hope Harris Memorial Award is named for the late Hope Harris. Ms. Harris was a long-time aide to Senators John and Lincoln Chafee and served on the board of directors for AIDS Project Rhode Island. She was a leader in outreach efforts to the African-American community and in fighting the stigma around HIV/AIDS.
In 1985 Bea Temkin was a founding member on the Board of Directors of Project AIDS Rhode Island, which is now known as APRI. A volunteer for many local non-profit organizations, her involvement in APRI helped to attract those in the political, philanthropic and business communities to the AIDS cause. She passed away last April but her children, Donna Paolino Coia and Joseph R. Paolino, Jr.,will be on-hand at the Walk to receive the award.
“Bea helped to organize the first AIDS Walk for Life back in 1988, and she developed other fundraisers as well. Her work at that time was hugely influential, especially when the state and federal response to the HIV/AIDS epidemic was so small,” said APRI Executive Director Stephen Hourahan. “The work of Bea and her husband Martin was incredible and our organization wouldn’t be where it is today without her commitment to the cause.”
The Saturday night before the event several Providence nightlife venues will be participating in “Light Up Providence”. The featured venues will be decorated in a red themed motif in support of the Walk for Life. Participating venues include the Paolino Properties building at 100 Westminster Street, EGO, The Stable, The Village, Dark Lady/Alleycat, Mirabar, Colosseum, Eagle Providence, and Club Body.
For more information on the walk and APRI please visit aidsprojectri.org.
About AIDS Project RI (APRI)
APRI is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing compassionate, non-judgmental and collaborative response to the needs of people infected, affected and at-risk of HIV/AIDS, and is a division of Family Service of Rhode Island. For more information visit www.aidsprojectri.org or www.familyserviceri.org.