On May 1st, we had our 8th collaborative fundraiser with celebrity stylist Christo, of Christo Fifth Avenue and Curlisto. He’s been an amazing supporter of ours for over a decade, and we are deeply grateful to him for his ongoing support. This year we tried something new and ventured to a rooftop event space in midtown, The Attic! With friends from New York, Connecticut, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Washington DC in attendance, we got to celebrate the beginning of our 25th Anniversary Year. It’s hard to believe, but Iris House began its life in 1992 and began delivering services to the East Harlem community in 1993. We will be commemorating our Anniversary with a special project next Spring: be sure to watch out for it!
On Monday, May 8th, we produced the 12th annual Women as the Face of AIDS Summit, and this year with the theme “Resilient, Fierce and Wise,” we offered a challenge to our community to come together in strength and wisdom, stand up for themselves and help advocate for each other. We are all concerned about Ending the Epidemic, and the news from our
Federal Government gets grimmer and grimmer each week. One of our lessons is that we need to come together as a single community: people of color, women, LGBTQ individuals, people living with HIV/AIDS and other chronic conditions and our allies, families and friends and fight for our needs. We all have to rally together, to stand and protest, to call our representatives and to make our voices heard. We hope this year’s Summit brought some inspiration to you. Though we had to postpone our May 13th Health Fair (to September 30, join us then!), we were out on the route at AIDS Walk New York (and breaking our team’s record with over $14,000 raised!)
We continue to sit on and take leadership roles in NY State End the Epidemic workgroups and the New Jersey HIV Planning Group to ensure that our voices — and in particular the voices of women of color — are actively part of the conversations.
As I write this, we’re into June, which is Pride Month here in NYC and our prevention and outreach teams will be all over the City helping people to know their status, get connected to care and have greater independence over their lives!
Ingrid Floyd, Executive Director