March is National Women’s History month, and to celebrate, SASHA ARTs hosted an informative session about HIV/AIDS for the Florida A&M community.
The university’s Grand Ballroom was filled with women and men to discuss the topic and what can be done to prevent the spread of the disease.
SASHA ARTs is an acronym for Students Against the Spread of HIV/AIDS Access to Rapid Testing. The organization was created to promote awareness, outreach, prevention and knowledge about HIV/AIDS.
“Everyone in this room will know someone who has HIV, [or someone who] will contract it or die from it,” said Mariah Williams, a third-year political science student from Pompano, Fla. “That’s the nature of this disease.”
Many audience members shared their opinions of HIV.
Moderators of the program addressed some little known facts about the disease and talked about how it spreads. Sexual relationships were another subject.
“It taught me a lot,” said Aisha Swoope, a third-year agriculture business student. “This disease doesn’t care what you look like, how old you are or what your religion is.”
There were three boards on display at the event, each showing the participants and audience members what to do to help prevent the spread of the disease.
The first board illustrated the how-tos and whys of abstinence. It argued that abstinence is the best way to prevent spreading HIV/AIDS. The second board was about SASHA ARTs, informing the readers of when the organization was established, their mission and goal. The last board was about the use of condoms and showed the proper way to use and test condoms.
“Many women don’t know how to put on a female condom,” said Naomie Morency, a third-year health information management student.
“It was necessary for the women of our community to gather together and discuss a very serious subject,” said Morency.
“The poems, the musicians and art made the event intimate,” said Williams.