It was impossible NOT to be touched by this young
Rubén Barba Aguirre’s speech at Red Hot & Wild. (Translated from the original Spanish) #ajijiccares
There is something very important that I would like to tell you. When I was fifteen years old I started my sexual life, didn´t know how to use a condom, didn´t worry about STD´s. For me everything about STD´s including AIDS didn´t even cross my mind. When they mentioned AIDS I thought it was for older people, never imagining it for myself, like so, many other young people could not imagine it for themselves, but that HIV was so far away. You meet someone, you´re attracted to, someone to love and have sex without protection…and after a while you receive the diagnosis.
Later comes the moment when you tell your parents. I wasn´t sure what HIV was. When I told my mother, it was something simple like, ¨Remember when I went to take the HIV Test? Well came out Positive.¨ I didn´t know if it came from ¨nerves¨ or my being misinformed but it sounded sort of like an anecdote. So, of course, my mother thought it was a joke until she realized that it was true. And she cried as she had never before. My father was a totally different story…..his prejudices and his stereotypes being apparent.
Three years ago on February 28, 2012, I received my diagnosis … went to Face Book and looked at my photos. It was as if I had a mark on my face that said ¨HIV¨. I didn´t know how someone with HIV looked, but later remembered that I had it and thought, ¨I think this is how someone with HIV looks.¨
One day I was surfing the Social Net and I stumbled upon an ad that invited people to be part of a group of young people to participate in the Answer to HIV. It was there where I learned all about the virus and many other things that have been a very important part of my personal growth. Now, I have become part of the Answer to HIV. I collaborate with other young people so that together we can share information about AIDS with more young people.
There are groups, associations, foundations and people committed to the cause….those who have shown that HIV is not synonymous with death, that people can get medication on time, be responsibly sexually active and free.
People like you who have attended today to contribute to the cause can keep this cause alive.
For people who once believed that it was possible to end death from HIV in the world…it is now that we are succeeding.
For more information on how you can help this amazing group of young people making such a huge differnce in the lives of people with HIV or AIDS contact Bobby Lancaster or Dan Blackburn at email@example.com