SUNY Potsdam Aids Education Group Offers Candlelight Memorial

04.15.14

The SUNY Potsdam AIDS Education Group will take part in the 31st Annual Candlelight Memorial Service in conjunction with the Global Network of People Living with AIDS (GNP+). The service will be held on Wednesday, April 30 at 6 p.m. in the Academic Quad, near the Frederick W. Crumb Memorial Library.

The Candlelight Memorial is one of the largest and oldest grassroots mobilization campaigns for HIV/AIDS awareness in the world. This event is free, and the public is invited to attend.

For 31 years, the Candlelight Memorial has brought people together in every region of the world to honor those lost to AIDS and demonstrate the importance of civil society, a movement in step with the spread of the disease itself. 

Locally, participants will light candles and walk around the perimeter of the SUNY Potsdam campus. This year's theme, "Let's Keep the Light on HIV," includes more than 1,200 volunteer candlelight coordinators in 115 countries. Again this year, participants will be able to track their event via a world map provided by the Global Health Council. For more information, visit www.candlelightmemorial.org.

The event is an opportunity to educate about AIDS, advocate for policy change, foster partnerships and community dialogue and improve skills for community mobilization. With 33 million people estimated to be infected worldwide, the memorial serves as an important uniting intervention among civil society and their governments, breaking down social barriers, and giving hope to future generations.

This event marks the culmination of a successful 25th academic year of PAEG HIV/AIDS awareness activities. This year's activities began in Fall 2013 with the biannual Toothbrushes for Malawi Drive, and will conclude with a fundraising bake sale for the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation, which will be offered on May 8.

SUNY-PAEG was created in 1988 by faculty, staff and students interested in promoting HIV/AIDS awareness and education and developing interventions to reduce the risk of infection. Since then, their activities have included networking and working with local, regional, national and international groups to achieve this goal.

For more information, please contact Patricia Whelehan, at whelehpe@potsdam.edu or (315) 267-2048.

To learn more about community service at SUNY Potsdam, visit www.potsdam.edu.

Founded in 1816, and located on the outskirts of the beautiful Adirondack Park, The State University of New York at Potsdam is one of America's first 50 colleges. SUNY Potsdam currently enrolls approximately 4,300 undergraduate and graduate students. Home to the world-renowned Crane School of Music, SUNY Potsdam is known for its handcrafted education, challenging liberal arts and sciences core, excellence in teacher training and leadership in the performing and visual arts. Empowered by a culture of creativity, the campus community recently launched Take the Lead: The Campaign for Potsdam, which aims to raise $27 million by the College's bicentennial in 2016.