Hawai‘i Health & Harm Reduction Center [HHHRC] has been a part of Hawai‘i life for nearly 40 years. Carrying the torch of Life Foundation [founded 1983], it is the oldest and largest AIDS services organization in Hawai‘i, providing direct services to over 700 persons living with HIV on O‘ahu. Honolulu AIDS Walk began in 1991 as a way of raising much needed funds to serve those in our community living with HIV/AIDS. Over the last 30 years, it has grown and evolved to support many of our prevention and education services that benefit our community. Over 3,000 walkers typically participate in this community driven event at Kapi‘olani Park. But, because these are not typical times, we have brought the walk online this year to keep our community safe and to expand opportunity to participate throughout the month of June.
On June 1, HHHRC is honoring the 30th anniversary of the Honolulu AIDS Walk with a month-long celebration. Highlights include a 30-minute televised special on KHON2, a month-long virtual AIDS Walk, a smattering of entertainment events, and food and drink specials with local partner restaurants. The televised special – Friends for Life: 40 years of HIV and 30 years of the Honolulu AIDS Walk – highlights our community’s resilience in the battle against HIV/AIDS. It’ features many prominent public figures who were at the forefront of navigating our ohana through the HIV epidemic, local musicians, and personal stories of perseverance.
“Residents of Hawai‘i should take pride in our state placing public health at the forefront of its ongoing response to HIV/AIDS just as it has for the past three and a half decades. We’ve offered care services and medication to people living with HIV, prohibited discrimination against those living with HIV, and funded a statewide syringe exchange program to proactively prevent HIV outbreaks among persons who inject drugs,” says HHHRC Executive Director, Heather Lusk. “We also are profoundly indebted to those who have been public champions on behalf of people living with HIV. Among them are Life Foundation Co-Founders Dr. David McEwan and Jack Law, Life Foundation executive Paul Groesbeck, and those who have marshalled community support like entertainer Brickwood Galuteria, who lost his younger brother to AIDS in 1992.”
There are events and activities to have fun and build community. You have an opportunity to become a monthly supporter of HHHRC with our gift giving program. Go to our website – www.honoluluaidswalk.org – to sign up and keep up with our schedule.
Mahalo for your participation!
Learn more about us:
HHHRC’s mission is to reduce harm, promote health, create wellness, and fight stigma in Hawaii and the Pacific. We serves Hawai’i communities by reducing the harm and fighting the stigma of HIV, hepatitis, homelessness, substance use, mental illness, and poverty in our community. We focus our efforts on those disproportionately affected by social determinants of health, including but not limited to: people living with and/or affected by HIV, hepatitis, substance use, and the transgender, LGBQ and the Native Hawaiian communities. We foster health, wellness, and systemic change in Hawai’i and the Pacific through care services, advocacy, training, prevention, education, and capacity building.
Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, HHHRC has responded to the emerging needs of the community by partnering with Hawaii Foodbank to distribute over 300,000 pounds of food to those in need across Oahu. It has also worked with state and local government officials in the administration of quarantine facilities in Iwilei and now Waikiki.