Posts tagged with "Good News"

illustration by Gabrielle Marchan for use by 360 Magazine

HRC Launches In-Home HIV Testing Kit

The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) Foundation, the educational arm of the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) civil rights organization, in partnership with Us Helping Us, launched the United States’ first national in-home HIV testing program centered around reaching communities disproportionately impacted by HIV—Black and Latinx gay, bisexual men and transgender women of color. Also, for the first time in its history, HRC will be providing a direct-to-door service to the LGBTQ+ community by pledging to administer a minimum of 5,000 free in-home testing kits for HIV over one year. 

In the lead up to Southern HIV/AIDS Awareness Day on August 20, the in-home testing kits aim to empower people to learn their status and take control of their sexual health without having to visit a medical provider. Usually, HIV testing is done with a doctor, in a hospital, or at a community health clinic but due to lack of access to healthcare and HIV stigma, marginalized populations often do not receive testing.

“The continued prevalence of the HIV/AIDS epidemic requires innovative solutions—these in-home self-testing kits allow people to find out their result in the privacy of their own home, thereby reducing HIV stigma and fear,” said J. Maurice McCants-Pearsall, Human Rights Campaign Director of HIV & Health Equity. “This expanded partnership with community-based organizations presents a unique opportunity for The Human Rights Campaign to leverage its extensive reach to propel access to life-saving HIV testing for multiply marginalized communities.”

Supported by Gilead Sciences, the home-service fits under the umbrella of My Body, My Health, a comprehensive public education campaign that works toward building a generation free of HIV/AIDS. In addition to disseminating the 5,000 testing kits, the program will provide a referral to PrEP providers in the person’s area, and link HIV positive individuals to care via navigation services. The kits will include an OraQuick oral swab, condoms, lubricants, and a test information card. HRC has also created educational resources to complement the test kits, such as an instructional test video and an online service page that shows local HIV prevention and treatment services.

Along with the HIV in-home test kits, HRC Foundation has launched a community campaign that targets regions across the country that are the most affected by HIV/AIDS—those communities are New Orleans, LA, Miami, FL, Washington DC, Puerto Rico, Indianapolis, IN and Greenville, MS. This is a digital advocacy, public awareness campaign that seeks to educate and activate Black and Latinx communities through discussing the intersections of sexual health, race and queerness in order to break down long-lasting HIV stigma and fear.

“Us Helping Us, one of the oldest and largest HIV prevention, treatment and care agencies in the nation, is pleased to partner with HRC Foundation on this high-impact and critically important initiative to achieve the EHE targets,” said Dr. DeMarc Hickson, Us Helping Us Executive Director. “It is of equal importance to increase HIV testing in areas such as the Southeastern U.S., which has a long-standing history of oppression, white supremacy and HIV stigma. In addition, we envision a world free of stigma and where HIV testing is part of routine health care.”

Current data confirms that the availability of HIV self-tests in the United States would not only increase HIV awareness, but would also expand access to testing among communities who would not otherwise get an HIV test in traditional healthcare settings. Furthermore, it is recommended that everyone between the ages of 13 and 64 get tested for HIV at least once as part of routine healthcare and once every three months for gay and bisexual men.

Marginalized populations, including LGBTQ people, face both societal and economic barriers that prevent them from accessing healthcare and communities of color have been hit the hardest—1 in 2 Black gay and bisexual cisgender men and 1 in 4 Latinx gay and bisexual cisgender men will be diagnosed with HIV in their lifetime. According to a recent CDC study in seven United States cities, 42 percent of transgender women interviewed had HIV, with 62 percent of Black transgender women and 35 percent of Latinx transgender women already living with HIV.

The Human Rights Campaign Foundation

The Human Rights Campaign Foundation is the educational arm of the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) people. Through its programs, the HRC Foundation seeks to make transformational change in the everyday lives of LGBTQ people, shedding light on inequity and deepening the public’s understanding of LGBTQ issues, with a clear focus on advancing transgender and racial justice. Its work has transformed the landscape for more than 15 million workers, 11 million students, 600,000 clients in the adoption and foster care system and so much more. The HRC Foundation provides direct consultation and technical assistance to institutions and communities, driving the advancement of inclusive policies and practices; it builds the capacity of future leaders and allies through fellowship and training programs; and, with the firm belief that we are stronger working together, it forges partnerships with advocates in the U.S. and around the globe to increase our impact and shape the future of our work.

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DJ D-Nice and Dhani Jones × COVID-19 Relief

DJ D-Nice Joins Former NFL Linebacker Dhani Jones to Support COVID-19 Financial Relief through #GiveTogetherNow

Over 28,000 families and counting will receive financial support through #GiveTogetherNow, a rapid-response effort to get cash directly to people struggling as a result of the coronavirus.

NFL-athlete-turned social entrepreneur Dhani Jones will interview DJ D-Nice about how he’s using music to bring people together during this time of social distancing through his #ClubQuarantine DJ sessions on Instagram Live.

Derrick “D-Nice” Jones is a talented musician and photographer who uses his dual passions to share his love for music, art, and creative culture. His most recent project, #ClubQuarantine, an Instagram Live virtual dance party, has drawn celebrities like first lady Michelle Obama, Drake and Oprah Winfrey.

Dhani Jones is partnering  with Stand Together to connect people across the country with some of the world’s most interesting people who want to share their stories, experiences, and talent to inspire and contribute to others around the globe through a new Instagram Live series of conversations called “Stand Together Live.”

Stand Together LIVE will feature interviews, performances, and masterclasses designed to help people thrive during these challenging times. Proceeds go to #GiveTogetherNow – a COVID-19 rapid response effort for families struggling during this crisis. In just one week, #GiveTogetherNow has raised over $14.4 million, enough to reach more than 28,000 families. 100 percent of the donations go directly to families in need.

The COVID-19 global pandemic has forced the world to exercise social distancing and that has had severe economic consequences for families. With so much change and uncertainty, people are creating ways to connect with each other and meaningfully contribute to those around them by sharing advice, stories, inspiration, practical support and resources for those coping with the fallout of the coronavirus.

Stand Together believes that every single person has something unique to contribute and that when people come together, we all can rise. That’s why Stand Together launched #GiveTogetherNow, a rapid-response effort to get cash directly to individuals and families struggling as a result of the coronavirus and ensuing economic crisis.

About #GiveTogetherNow

Stand Together and the Family Independence Initiative partnered to create #GiveTogetherNow, which offers families access to a direct and immediate cash transfer to help offset financial burdens caused by the measures to stop the spread of COVID-19. The online platform allows anyone to make a contribution to families who will receive cash deposits to their bank accounts. #GiveTogetherNow has raised over $14.4 million providing more than 28,000 families each with a $500 emergency fund deposited directly into their bank accounts to help them with any financial burden caused by the global pandemic.

About Stand Together

Stand Together is a philanthropic community that empowers people dedicated to helping others improve their lives. We identify, vet, and create organizations that discover innovative ways to remove barriers in education, business, communities, and government so every person can rise. We partner with these groups by offering tools and resources to dramatically increase their effectiveness and scale. Learn more at StandTogether.org or Instagram @standtogether.

NYC “Guardian Angels” Help Homeless

Guardian Angels Wash, Feed Homeless on NYC Subways Amid COVID-19

‘Nearly 1 in every 125 New Yorkers is homeless’

In the vast NYC Subway system, there are 472 stations and 23 different subway lines. Even during normal times, the homeless and the many Emotionally Disturbed Persons choose the subways and trains to ride back and forth on to stay warm and dry, says  Curtis Sliwa, founder of the  Guardian Angels, a non-profit organization that has been helping people worldwide since 1979.

Now that we are under the Corona Virus Spread, NYC being the worst area, the presence of the homeless and EDP’s, is more pronounced. They are in desperate need of help but no Government agencies are doing interventions. They have locked their offices and sheltered in. The NYC Guardian Angels have filled the void.

The Guardian Angels walk up and down the trains first doing Wellness Checks. Then they approach the homeless who live on the train and have them wash their hands with alcohol wipes. The Angels give them a care package with water, food and wipes. They also use disinfectant and wipe down the areas that the homeless are either sitting in or laying down on. No one else is doing this.

“Nobody is tending to the homeless and emotionally disturbed, a population where Coronavirus could spread like wildfire,” Guardian Angel founder  Curtis Sliwa recently told The Post.

Unlike our politicians who spend every day blaming one another for this Corona Virus Flu spreading, the Guardian Angels, are showing how people should not wait around for our leaders to figure out that they must work together on these problems.

The Guardian Angels say “FEAR NOT.” Take proactive measures. Mother Teresa and her nuns didn’t wait for governments to deal with the Lepers in the Leper colonies. They took proactive measures and helped those who had Leprosy. By the way, they didn’t wear masks or gloves. We are safe and we will continue to come to the aid of those who have been forgotten and ignored. The Homeless and the many EDP’s.

According to the non-profit The Bowery Mission, nearly one in every 125 New Yorkers is homeless,  reports Emily Drooby of NetTV

About the Guardian Angels
In 1979, New York City was the crime capital of the United States. Along with many NYC natives, Curtis Sliwa grew tired of the subway threats, street fights and fearful nights. These dangers and lack of control were the impetus for Sliwa’s groundbreaking idea: The Guardian Angels. Conceived as a grassroots opportunity for individuals to rally with one another, The Guardian Angels quickly became an international phenomenon. Known by their signature red berets, the Angels’ persona stood for justice and the empowerment of individuals.

Today, The Guardian Angels have expanded into 14 countries and over 140 cities. The volunteer organization continues to flourish as individuals assume local responsibility for their communities. It is a constant example of the power of “Us and We, not I and Me.”

Website: http://guardianangels.org

Ocean Park Standoff Releases “If You Were Mine” Music Video

Hollywood Records artist Ocean Park Standoff have released their new music video for their current single “If You Were Mine” featuring acclaimed hip-hop recording artist Lil Yachty today.  CLICK HERE to watch the new video. To date, “If You Were Mine” has accumulated 6 million overall audio streams and has charted #27 on the Hot AC and #28 on Billboard’s Adult Pop Song. Many remember OPS’s much buzzed about 2017 debut single “Good News”, which now boasts over 30 million streams online.  With “If You Were Mine”, the band continues to display their undeniable ability at creating catchy pop-tunes while fusing together multiple genres.

The band recently performed the new single on CONAN and they just returned from a multi-city nationwide tour with Plain White T’s.

Each of the artists behind Ocean Park Standoff comes from a world all their own. A self-taught producer who built his own studio in the basement as a kid, Pete Nappi constructs deeply inventive productions equally inspired by art rock and underground hip-hop. A longtime DJ known for spinning at high-profile gigs around the globe, Samantha Ronson is also a songwriter/multi-instrumentalist who matches her lyrical smarts with a sonic ingenuity rooted in her fascination with obscure vintage instruments. And as a classically trained vocalist, Ethan Thompson has revealed his refined songcraft in penning hits for major artists and performing at singer/songwriter hotspots around L.A.