AIDS Walk Los Angeles

California’s largest HIV/AIDS fundraising event, AIDS Walk Los Angeles, will be taking place Oct. 16.

The event raises money by having people participate in a 10-K walk and having one or more people to sponsor them.

According to the AIDS Walk L.A. website the organization has already raised $784,527 for this years event and the event isn’t until next month.

Last year they raised over $2.8 million and hope to do better this year.

There is no fee to register and no minimum amount to sponsor someone.

Anyone can join as an individual or with a team.

At Pierce the Gay Straight Alliance(GSA) has a team that participates in the event every year.

“It was really good and they give you a lot of free food” says Fernando Aquino, member of the Pierce GSA team that participated last year, “people are like ‘oh I’m going to go exercise’ but in reality you end up gaining calories not losing them.”

The GSA team successfully raised more than a thousand dollars with around 30 participants last year.

“I remember it was more than a thousand dollars because the officers(on campus) made a pledge that if we raised more than a thousand dollars they would dress up as the spice girls and they did!” says Aquino.

This year they have pledged to dress as the Powerpuff Girls or 80’s pop stars if the team is able to raise more than $1,200 according to Aquino.

“This is a huge thing, and it’s got a party atmosphere” says Hillel Wasserman, Board member of Being Alive and co-captain of team Being Alive, “At the same time its a day to reflect and remember everyone  we’ve lost and all the work we have
ahead of us.”

Wasserman has been participating in the event since 1987 and has been a co-captain for team Being Alive since they became a Community Coalition Team five years ago.

The money raised will go primarily to Aids Project L.A. however, any AIDS service organization can actually form their own team under the Community Coalition Initiative and keep 100% of the funds they raise at no cost to themselves.

The organization Being Alive will be at Pierce Oct.17 through Oct. 21 raising HIV/AIDS awareness and urging students to get tested the following week when there will be free HIV testing on campus.