Teen council spreads awareness on HIV and AIDS


Clara Rehmann and Annabelle Schwartz run a booth to help educate people on HIV and AIDS. Cyrus Lyday photo.

By Sunflower Rangel, Copy Editor

There are an estimated 34 million people around the world who are living with HIV/AIDS. Since the virus’s identification in 1984, more than 35 million have died due to HIV or AIDS. How are those who have died been honored and how do we bring awareness to the topic? With World AIDS Day, of course.

The first World AIDS Day was celebrated all the way back in 1988. It is held on Dec. 1 and represented with the red ribbon. World AIDS Day is an occasion for any and all to band together and show their support for those living with HIV and commemorate those who have died because of it. This can be done by simply educating others.

The Planned Parenthood teen council did just that. Representatives Clara Rehmann and Annabelle Schwartz had a table set up in Senior Hall that Tuesday afternoon. The table had information on HIV/AIDS, AIDS awareness pins, condoms, bracelets adorned with red ribbons, and a wheel of trivia. Each portion of the wheel was accompanied by a question regarding HIV/AIDS such as “True or false: the most common ways of spreading HIV are through sex and needle sharing.” The answer is true.

When asked what the purpose of their booth was, Schwartz answered with, “Well, it’s AIDS Awareness Day and there is a lot that people don’t know about AIDS and HIV so we’re spreading awareness and giving away some swag.” “We’re just trying to make sure that people are educated because it’s important. Life or death out here,” added Rehmann.

She’s right. It is life or death. The more you know, the safer you and your partner will be. So get educated before making any serious decisions. Schwartz and Rehmann always have safe sex materials and can help you with Planned Parenthood referrals that are completely confidential, thanks to the teen council.