Wednesday, December 1, 2010

World AIDS Day

Today is World AIDS Day. The fight against AIDS is a cause that I advocate and feel extremely passionate about. I wanted to take the time and share some facts and statistics with you about HIV / AIDS.

HIV stands for Human Immunodeficiency Virus. HIV is what causes AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome). The virus cannot replicate on its own. Instead, it invades the CD4 cells of the immune system. Your immune system works to fend off viruses and infections. HIV replicates itself inside of the CD4 cells and once it completes the task, those cells die -- leaving the immune system defenseless. When the number of CD4 cells drops to a certain level, a person then has AIDS.

Although researchers have made great strides in recent years with drugs like antiretroviral medications (which suppresses the virus), there is still no cure. There is no vaccine. There is still a lot that we don't know about the disease. Your best defense against HIV is to educate yourself with knowledge and means of prevention.

In 2009, 2.6 million people have been diagnosed with HIV and there are roughly 33.3 million people who have the virus. Among those 33.3 million, many already have full blown AIDS. Since AIDS was identified in 1981, more than 25 million people have died.

Global HIV / AIDS statistics from the end of 2009:

How the beauty community can help:

The MAC AIDS Fund had raised over $190 million for the cause. The Viva Glam campaign is the backbone of their fund. Every cent of profit from the lipsticks and lipglasses ($14 USD) are donated to those who are affected by HIV / AIDS. Here's a breakdown of what ONE lipstick provides:

  • 23 female condoms or 233 male condoms
  • 18 personalized birthday cakes to be hand delivered to a person living with HIV / AIDS on their birthday
  • 14 blood glucose monitoring strips
  • 8 individually tailored, nutritious home-cooked meals
  • 2 emergency boxes filled with non-perishable food
  • 2 hours of childcare for a woman's children during her doctor appointments
  • 1 personal nutrition counselling session with a registered dietitian
  • 1 week's supply of groceries for 2 clients
  • 1 Maxi-Pharmadose medication organizer
  • 1 therapeutic recreation session
  • 1 rapid oral HIV test
  • 1 pair of school shoes for a child orphaned by AIDS
  • 1 party pack for a child's Christmas, Easter, or Birthday
  • 1 month of public transportation for a woman to travel to and from doctor's appointments 
  • 1 school stationary starter pack for a child orphaned by AIDS
  • 1 vegetable seed starter pack for a community garden

So, when you purchase a Viva Glam lipstick or lipglass, perhaps a Sir Teddy or Viva Glam bag, remember the the cause behind it and remember how your purchase helps to further those affected by the disease.

Sites of Interest:


All Made Up said...

Nice post! I only found out a few days ago that MAC support (and donate LOADS of funds) to the AIDS charities. Great to see such a massive well-known company getting involved cos it's gotta be one of the best ways of spreading the word and encouraging people to donate a few of their hard earned pennies :)

Pricela said...

Wow! That's pretty impressive! I might just get some of that lipstick... said...

Hi Katie,

I hope this finds you well. Healthline just released an informative article with graphics regarding HIV/AIDs facts in the US and around the World. The page details who is being effected and the cost of treatment. You can check out the resource here:

This valuable, med-reviewed information shows the need to continueeducating people on prevention and how to protect yourself and your loved ones. I thought this would be a great resource for your audience, and I am writing to ask if you would include it as a source of information on your page:

Please let me know if this would be possible. I’m happy to answer any other questions as well.

Warm regards,
Maggie Danhakl • Assistant Marketing Manager
Healthline • The Power of Intelligent Health
660 Third Street, San Francisco, CA 94107 | @Healthline | @HealthlineCorp

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