Your walking shoes will double as dancing shoes on March 18 as the annual Florida AIDS Walk & Music Festival hits Fort Lauderdale Beach.
Flo Rida is scheduled to headline, with DJ Citizen Jane rocking the beach before his set.
“He’s really exciting and a great performer,” AIDS Healthcare Foundation’s Imara Canady said. “It’s going to be a fun day with some great entertainer and a great messenger.”
AHF produces the event and knows that South Florida remains an epicenter for new HIV infections. Canady says bringing Flo Rida back (he’s played this gig before) helps them reach the right people.
“He is great in terms of helping to spread awareness and to attract an audience that needs to be educated and create emphasis around the epidemic.”
Even though the HIV epidemic has been pushed off the headlines, it’s still a health threat, and events like these keep raising awareness.
“People think, because there have been such advances in medicine and science, that HIV and AIDS isn’t a thing anymore.”
Money raised will go to various South Florida HIV organizations. They can use the money to cover expenses and programs that aren’t covered by grants. The goal was $1.5M and has already surpassed that mark.
SunServe CEO Tony Lima is leading the way. He has personally raised $241,000 while his team, SunServe Guardian Circle, has raised an additional $54,000 and is the leading team with $296,000.
Lima says this event is important because groups go into the community and make personal contact.
“It’s building a layer of ambassadors for the work that we do. When you educate people one-on-one and ask them for support then they will naturally purvey your message.”
Check-in begins at 8 a.m., with DJ Citizen Jane spinning at 9 a.m. The walk steps off at 10 a.m. and Flo Rida hits the stage at 11:30 a.m.
For more event details and how to participate, visit FloridaAIDSWalk.org.